Affogato, SW16 4AQ

Cafe/coffee shop in Norbury.

Note: As of March 2017, Affogato is temporarily closed, due both to needing refurbishment to sort out some drainage issues and to Croydon Council having noticed that it doesn't have planning permission to operate as a cafe. Still closed as of early May.

It's on the upmarket side, with modern but subtle decor in greys, creams, and browns. A curved counter displays ice creams and cakes, while coffee syrups and caddies of loose-leaf tea sit on shelves behind. A banquette runs the length of one wall, flanked by and tables and upright chairs. Small pleather armchairs are arranged along the floor-to-ceiling front windows, and four more small tables are on the pavement out the front under a canopy.

All the tea is loose-leaf, and includes interesting options such as ceylon with vanilla. The food menu focuses on sweet items such as crepes, sundaes, and waffles, but they also do cooked breakfasts and toasted sandwiches (served all day). They use turkey bacon and ham, and their meat is halal. Orders and payment are taken at the counter, and they'll bring your food and drinks to your table when they're ready. No service charge is added, but there's a tip jar by the till.

Kake has visited twice now. On a Thursday afternoon in March 2016, there were about a dozen other customers when I arrived a little after 2:30pm, and several more came and went while I was there. No music was playing, but there was plenty of lively conversation. A pot of peppermint tea (£1.90) photo was nicely refreshing, with a strong but not harsh flavour.

It was somewhat quieter on a Thursday lunchtime in April 2016; there were half a dozen people in when I arrived around 1:30pm, and by the time I left half a hour later this had dwindled to three. The hum of the fridge was the predominant background sound this time.

Eggs florentine (£5.50) photo were well-presented, and a change from the usual in that one egg was on the traditional spinach while the other was on a halved tomato (this is clearly indicated on the menu). The spinach was nicely seasoned and nicely cooked, and I wished there had been more of it. The yolks of the eggs were properly runny, spilling out at the mere touch of a knife, but unfortunately so in part were the whites (still, I'd rather have slightly runny whites than a hard yolk). The muffin was a bit too doughy for my taste. I was initially a bit sceptical of the reduced balsamic drizzle, but it turned out to be nicely balanced, not too sweet, and a useful extra little kick of tanginess.

Service was friendly on both my visits.

Kake's verdict: I'd come back if I was in the area.

Accessibility: A step to get in. No steps to toilet (single unisex cubicle), though the floor is a bit uneven.

See also:

Last visited by Kake, April 2016. Opening hours taken from sign on door, April 2016.
OS X co-ord: 530671 OS Y co-ord: 169560 (Latitude: 51.410013 Longitude: -0.122545)
Last edited 2017-05-06 06:26:32 (version 6; diff). List all versions.