Grown men flock to the windows to catch a glimpse of a kitten snuggled up on the blankets, while the inside is packed to the rafters with guests desperate to win the attention of one of the 11 adorable rescue cats. Before going in, we were given a few ground rules: leave sleeping cats alone, don’t feed them your human food, and don’t attempt to steal one.
Upon entering we found the upstairs to be a refined affair with more formal tables and chairs, but the downstairs was our preferred area thanks to its cosy jumble of mismatched furniture, old trunks and wooden cabinets making you feel as if you’re in your gran’s front room – well, if she was a crazy cat lady who invited hoards of strangers round for tea.
You can opt for individual slices of cake, such as red velvet, carrot or elderflower, but we would definitely recommend the cream tea, all served on floral china plates. The apple and cinnamon scones crumbled into our mouths with just a few gulps, topped with a dollop of cream and jam to help them slide down. Light meals are also up for grabs, including vegetable calzone, salads and savoury tarts, while gluten-free lavender, rosewater and chocolate macaroons can also be tucked into.
Behind the bar:
Choose from an assortment of coffees and teas, from the traditional English breakfast to the interestingly flavoured popcorn, rooibos and marzipan teas. Cold drinks such as Coke, Sprite and orange juice also available.
Entry to the cafe is £5, while cakes are from £2.40; cream tea £5.75 per person; salads £5; light meals from £7.
This delightfully barmy café is a whisker above other East London eateries.
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Image credit: Vicky Anscombe