Montgomery’s Tea Rooms, Wapping Wharf: Review

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Montgomery's Tea Rooms - Exterior

 

Unintentionally, I seem to have something against visiting places in close proximity to where I live – I don’t know why this is. Montgomery’s Tea Rooms, located within The Framing Factory next to M Shed and having opened way back in early 2014, are no more than a 5 minute walk from my front door, but are somewhere I’d never visited in the two and a half years during which I’ve lived in the area. That’s all changed now, though, after a quick takeaway lunch stop this week.

There’s no denying that the vast, warehouse-style building doesn’t look that inviting from the outside, but step in through the door and things are very different. The relatively small dining area is light, bright and airy, and incredibly calm, and opens out directly through to The Framing Factory itself. The wooden tables and metal chairs, combined with the open plan kitchen give the tea rooms a somewhat industrial feel: a feel that is softened by the purple accents in the potted flowers and seat cushions dotted throughout.

 

Montgomery's Tea Rooms - Interior

 

The walls groan with a huge number of framed prints, all of which are available to buy, while a highchair and a sign advertising that Bristol Pounds are accepted sit alongside a cabinet from which diners can grab their cutlery and serviettes.

One side of the counter is laden with cakes and tray bakes – some, such as the chocolate brownies and flapjacks, which are made in house, and others provided by the very talented Erica of Bristol-based The Gourmet Food Company.

In the middle, you’ll find a selection of drinks that include soft options such as some of the Fentimans range, bottled water and Coke in glass bottles, as well as boozy options such as Wiper & True beers, Sandford Orchards ciders, wines and even champagne. There’s also a selection of savoury items that are all made in-house which, on the day of my visit, included both a vegetarian (goats’ cheese and roasted vegetable) and a meaty (chorizo, tomato, potato and Cheddar) Spanish omelette.

Two blackboards on the wall advertise the brunch and lunch menus: the former including a full English, huevos rancheros and a variety of breakfast muffins topped with poached eggs and a range of other ingredients, with prices between roughly £6 and £8. On the lunch front, the more substantial choices of a burger or fish and chips sit alongside various paninis, salads and wraps (priced at £5.95 each) as well as the soup of the day, served with bread and butter for £5.50.

On the hot drinks front, you’ll be able to pick up a coffee (supplied by Martin Carwardine) for between £2.20 and £2.50 – I was also pleased to see that soy and decaf options were available – or one of a range of loose leaf teas from gunpowder green to lapsang souchong for £2.50 per pot.

I was after something simple to take away, so opted for a decaf latte, which was relatively well made, plus the one remaining goats’ cheese, sunblush tomato and chickpea roll (£3) that I’d spotted in their chiller cabinet. I said yes to their suggestion of having it heated through, and after a surprisingly lengthy wait, was provided with a foil-wrapped package in a paper bag to take home.

Disappointingly, the savoury pastry wasn’t particularly warm after walking the 5 minutes to my front door, but it still looked appetising with its slightly caramelised ends and poppy seed-strewn top. The pastry itself was well-made and not too heavy, while the filling was 0ut of this world. The crushed chickpeas gave it a falafel-like flavour, while the addition of tangy goats’ cheese and small chunks of sweet sunblush tomatoes added a great deal of flavour. Fantastic.

 

Montgomerys Tea Rooms - Savoury Roll 1

Montgomery's Tea Rooms - Savoury Roll 2

 

At £3, it was a pretty good value lunch – especially considering the central, touristy location of the tea rooms. I’d certainly be keen to head back and sample more of their menu – it could be a good shout for a lazy weekend breakfast not far from our front door. With such a prominent location, though, I’d expect the place to be busier – these guys really need to shout a little louder about what they’re doing, and let people know that they’re there.

 

2 Responses to Montgomery’s Tea Rooms, Wapping Wharf: Review

  1. I regularly visit Mokoko but thought I would give this little cafe a visit. As soon as I walked in I was insulted by Esme, one of the members of staff behind the counter. She didn’t realise I could hear what she was saying. I was completely shocked. We regularly visit the Waterfront and pop in to one of the cafes. With a wide range of fantastic cafes around the corner with great customer service I will definitely not be visiting here again.

  2. The drinks and food are brilliant. The staff are really kind and friendly. I would definitely give this place a 10/10. 😀

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