Bread and Butter
Its fair to say I like cake. I really love chocolate. But a couple of months ago, after realizing I am slightly intolerant, I made the decision to cut wheat out of my diet in a bid to improve my health and help my intended weight loss. The biggest sacrifices this has brought about are bread and cake, and Ive really been craving a good coffee and cake morning for a while, but Ive avoided it as usually almost all the sweet treats on offer at coffee shops are full of wheat flour. Then a week or so ago I saw a local coffee shop advertising their wheat free chocolate torte and I set about trying to find an occasion to warrant such a treat. To that end I was very grateful to my friend for having a birthday last Friday.
Steve and Eileen Cross were the kind of family who always had people popping in to visit them and, after being suitably impressed with Eileens cakes and breads, their guests would often suggest they open up a coffee shop. Eileen comes from a family of talented food lovers but never had the desire to open a coffee shop as such. Steve ran a paint shop and had branched out into other home dcor offerings, and Eileen decided to rent a small shop next to him so she could sell decorative household items to compliment Steves business. However, life has a funny way of leading us to our calling one way or another!
A friend brought a coffee machine to Steve and suggested they offer their clients coffee, perhaps have a small table or two so that their customers could sit and ponder wallpaper over a nice cappuccino. Eileen decided that if you are going to serve coffee it makes sense to offer a muffin or slice of chocolate cake to go with it. On December 2nd 2011 Steve, who until that day had never baked a cake in his life, started a daily routine of baking muffins and the odd cake. Before they knew it, their little coffee corner had become incredibly popular and their shop became better known for cakes than color charts.
Around the same time that the landlord they rented the little shop from wanted the property back, they were offered a prime location at the new shopping center opening down the road. The idea of taking on a one hundred seater coffee shop didnt exactly excite Steve, but somehow they decided to go for it and cake lovers throughout the local area are really grateful they did.
A visit to Bread and Butter is like stepping into a relaxed French country inspired breath of fresh air. Its comfortable and surrounded with beautiful things for sale which I can mostly imagine adorning my home. There is a lovely play area with a mix of modern and vintage style toys and with a little fence and gate enclosing it; small ones are quite safe. There are a couple of tables just next to the play area, usually coveted by the mums of little ones.
The play area really only caters for the younger children. My daughter loves it, but it doesnt really offer anything that appeals to my son. Not that this really matters with things like a DIY chocolate volcano on the kiddies menu; which encourages children to mix their own cake ingredients together before the waitress takes the concoction to the kitchen to be magically transformed into something edible. This does appeal to my son, who seems to have inherited my love for all things chocolate.
Like all new businesses they have had their fair share of teething problems. After trying several pastry chefs Steve and Eileen decided that the only way to get the baked bits of heaven (AKA Cakes) just as they wanted was to make them themselves. Steve has a fail proof method. He listens to Eileens recipe and instructions carefully and follows them to the letter. A method which results in this non-baker producing amazing delights day after day.
Now Ive been there several times before, sometimes with kids, sometimes with friends and once or twice with myself. The cakes have always been amazing, but on some occasions this has been overshadowed by service problems. Dealing with staff, training and getting the right management in place has been a process that like many other business owners, Steve and Eileen have had to go through. It couldnt have been an easy task but from what Ive seen, its started to pay off.
When I took my friend there for her birthday treat on Friday we were served by a very elegant waitress called Pam. She was friendly, helpful and attentive, and had a really nice disposition. I had a large cappuccino, well ok I had a couple of them, and my friend had a latte. It was really nice coffee; strong enough without being bitter and just enough foam.
We both ordered the chocolate torte and knowing it was wheat free I seriously enjoyed every bite. It is made with almond flour, chocolate and nuts. Heaven! My thoughts on it were that it would have been more enjoyable had it been warm and it needed a little something with it, perhaps a berry coulis. When I spoke to Steve about it he said they were in the process of tweaking it slightly so that its served warm with a chocolate ganache. I think this will definitely require a return visit from me in the near future! And this will be only one of the many menu additions they are planning on making shortly; kudu Carpaccio, burgers and one or two new cakes to mention just a few.
In short, Bread and Butter is a respectable choice for any occasion which warrants the demolishing of delicious cake, and your little ones will enjoy it too!
Host services: 3/5
Menu Choice: 3/5
Childrens facilities: 3/5
For further information please contact Bread and Butter on 021 554 5817 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.