Post by Rob Hickling
Fish & Chips, Gin & Tonic or even Ant & Dec. Some things were just made to be paired. To that list we can add cycling and coffee stops. We asked our members to vote on the best cafe stops, here are the results.
It’s no great surprise that New Malden’s first competition to crown the best café stops proved a hotly-debated affair. There’s no perfect formula, although location, range, and quality all factored into the result. We can honestly say all three cafés featured below scored highly on all counts.
Our resident coffee connoisseur Karl can confirm all three use good quality beans and carefully hand prepare their coffee. Alongside this they all offer up a good range of confectionery and a high-quality variety of teas. We strongly encourage you to visit them all.
Accordingly, we present to you, our favourites for 2019. As voted for and thoroughly researched by our members:
Best cafe stops bronze prize – Destination Bike, Box Hill
Having conquered the switchbacks of Box Hill your first option is the National Trust café. A decent option in its own right. However, to beat the queues and find a true cyclists’ paradise, continue on just past the summit of Surrey’s answer to Alpe d’Huez to arrive at Destination Bike. Part café, part bike shop it has many times been the saviour for cyclists seeking warmth and sustenance on a cold or wet ride. There is limited seating though, so be advised that it’s not the best option for very large groups. Great coffee and cake options make this a worthy listing for the bast cafe stops.
Best cafe stops silver prize – The Medicine Garden, Cobham
The Medicine Garden is frequently the option for our popular monthly intro rides and definitely one of the best cafe stops. In no small part down to the ample bike parking and friendly service that ensures new cyclists are quickly made to feel at home. On warm days it’s possible to sit and relax in the sunshine while there’s also sufficient space inside should the weather turn. Add to this, a brilliant selection of teas, coffees, cakes and savoury options and it’s clear to see why so many members gave it their vote.
Best cafe stops Gold Prize – The Cinnamon Café, Windsor
Situated in the former ticket hall of a Grade II listed Victorian railway station there are many reasons why our 2019 best cafe stops winner is a worthy choice. The 10% discount for cyclists, excellent service and thoughtful touches such as the provision of heated glove warmers all count in its favour. Yet, in truth the main reason this café comes out on top can be summed up in just three words; The Cinnamon Bun! Riders regularly motivate themselves to tackle the 50km between New Malden and Windsor in record time, spurred on by the thought of this sweet and filling treat. Just try not to overindulge as there’s still the small matter of managing the ride home…
Do you agree with our top three list or do you have suggestions for others we should try? Let us know in the comments.