Grao De Cafe, CR2 6EL
- 257 Brighton Road, CR2 6EL
- Mon-Sun: 8:30am-7pm
Portuguese cafe and grocery shop in South Croydon.
It's very small, seating just four people at a pair of round black tables with simple but elegant matching hoop-backed chairs. The decor is unfussy, with just a single picture (a coffee cup made from coffee beans) on the plain cream walls. Shelves to one side hold groceries including cereals, flour, tinned beans and chickpeas, vinegars, soup mixes, soft drinks, and sweet and savoury snacks. At the back is a glass counter with a display of cakes and pastries.
The food is a fairly limited selection. They always have pastries and panini available, and usually also one type of soup. On Saturdays and Sundays they have a Portuguese hot dish too.
Kake has visited twice now, both times on Monday mornings around 8:30am, most recently in March 2018. On both visits there were three other customers when I arrived, and a few others were in and out while I was there. Everyone except me seemed to be a regular. No music was playing. Service was friendly and welcoming.
In November 2017, a ham and cheese panini photo used good quality ingredients but needed longer in the sandwich toaster. This, a cup of tea, and a custard tart to take away came to £4.10.
In March 2018, a tuna and cheese panini again used good quality ingredients, and this time had been given sufficient time in the sandwich toaster, with the cheese all well melted and the exterior nice and crisp. Just enough mayonnaise was included to stop it being dry, and as this was a vinegar-heavy type it also sharpened up the flavour a bit in a very welcome way. The panini, a cup of tea, and a custard tart to take away came to £5.80.
Accessibility: A step to get in. No obvious customer toilet.