Caffe Be On, Clare Street: Review

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There’s plenty of choice when it comes to cafes around the Corn Street area. Small St Espresso, Full Court Press, Cafe Revival, the Playground Cafe, Caffe Nero for fans of chains, The Birdcage…the list goes on. There’s also Caffe Be On on Clare Street, which stands out from the outside with its bold red signage and colourful planters on the railings outside. We’d tried the place once before and weren’t that impressed, but decided to give it another go.

While it may look very different inside when compared with the other nearby coffee shops, there’s no denying that it’s great to have a splash of colour added to Clare Street. Step inside and you’ll find one wall in red, another in orange and a third in lime green, with snazzy paper covering wall number four. Coffee sacks line the stairwell that leads to the downstairs seating area, and with gentle music playing and comfortable chairs on which to sit, it’s a great place to sit and while the time away.


Caffe Be On - Interior


On the right by the front door you’ll find a tall chiller cabinet filled with sandwiches, drinks and fruit pots, while the counter is home to a range of Burts Crisps, Propercorn popcorn and a below-counter chiller filled with cakes and tray bakes. On the same wall there are boards advertising ice cream sundaes (£4.95) and fresh pancakes with various toppings (£5.25), along with various breakfast options, smoothies and more.

Caffe Be On offers a range of hot drinks, either to drink in or take away, and we opted for a large latte (£2.55) and a large decaf latte (£2.65 – it’s an extra 10p for decaf coffee) to drink in. We had a loyalty card stamped as we paid, giving us the option to come back in and drink more coffee to get a cup free.

Sadly, I don’t think we’ll be doing that. Our recent visit was blighted by the same problem as last time: the coffee just wasn’t great at all. It was hot and milky, as you’d expect from a latte…but that was pretty much it. There was virtually no discernible coffee flavour to speak of in the decaf latte, and the regular latte wasn’t much better.

It’s a real shame, as the environment is great and the staff friendly and helpful. I may well head back to try their lunchtime offerings, which do look good, but I don’t think I’ll be spending any more money on their coffees…


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