On Saturday my friend Trev came to Gloucester with his new wife. I was really ill and missed their wedding in December so was really excited to meet her. Turns out Alice is as much a foodie as him and they requested we start with brunch. The obvious choice was Hubble Bubble Coffee House where my husband, son and I had previously devoured burgers and we kept meaning to return to. I loved the adaptability of the menu and added smoked salmon to my poached eggs on smashed avocado on sourdough while the other adults went for full English breakfasts and my son had a stack of pancakes.
Fuelled for adventure we went into full tour guide mode and haphazardly tried to remember cool facts about our city. My expert patter went along the lines of “Scrooge was based on a real person and he lived around here… hmm” (three hours later we walked back that way and my husband excitedly spotted the blue sign that finished the story!)
After a walk around the docks, the obvious place for a drink was Tank; truly, there’s nothing we don’t like about the place and Trev played obedient tourist and ordered a trio of beers (each 1/3 of a pint).
All that eating and drinking made me think it was time for caffeine and sugar so the next destination was my favourite coffee shop, Caffe Corretto. We started going there when I was pregnant and hated decaf coffee so was in search of a good one. It was the destination of my first solo outing with my newborn and as I sat down with my coffee and cake he woke and began to scream. One of the waiters came over and chastised him before rocking the pram and singing in Italian. He smiled at me and gestured at my drink and snack. I’ve been a fangirl ever since.
Back in the day my husband and I were regulars at The Old Bell – we even got married there (and it was still our watering hole of choice when we went for a drink after the SoGlos Lifestyle Awards) but these days we’re far more often to go for a panini than a session of shots and so Caffe Corretto is our local.
I suggested to Alice we get four different things and she tasted them all before sharing them with us. The delight on her face was all the evidence I needed that my friend had married well. I insisted on a white chocolate and pistachio pyramid, my son negotiated raspberry ripple as the cheesecake of choice, then I recommended an amaretto gateau and a cannoli (and me allegedly not a pudding person!). They were delicious as always.
We did some more touristing and made a tour of the Cathedral before they left to join the family in Cheltenham that was the reason for their visit. By this point the weather was glorious so we stopped for a cheeky pint at one of our other favourite pubs,The Fountain before grabbing a burger at Portivo Lounge on the way home.
I don’t think I’ve ever visited so many of my favourite places in a single day and as I write this I remember we managed a coffee at Tarbosh which I only discovered a few weeks ago but have already visited four times!
So yes, it was a pretty good day. With more time where might I add? Well, on a sunny day I’m partial to some seafood at Tall Ships, my son and rarely go more than a month without getting lunch at On Toast (order the Fiery Welsh Dragon) and while I don’t go often, I’ve never had a disappointing meal at Cafe Rene. My friend Helen recently introduced me to Bangkok Canteenand it was phenomenal so is on the list for dates with my husband as frankly my son is a prawn cracker hog.
I think that’s the best of my city but if you’re local (or have just visited) and think I’ve missed somewhere, I’d love to hear your thoughts.