The last time I ventured to the The Tram Stop Cafe handily situated by Addiscombe tram stop in Croydon was back in March. I remember the peppered beef bagel that came with crisps and salad as well as the minty iced, with chocolate bunny inserted, cupcake and have distinct memories of loving it.
With rich deep blue walls, though not overwhelmingly dark thanks to the huge windows at the front, and dark wooden furniture the place feels warm and cosy. With a variety of seating to suit the group wanting coffee on the sofa to the family wanting lunch without taking up space to move around the layout allows for a stress-free and also somewhat private feeling environment.
And at last I recently had the chance to return when we walked past and my partner suggested we go in to one of the two local cafes on the way back.. I could hardly refuse! We were quite lucky to get a seat just after midday on a Saturday but found ourselves able to occupy a table just by the window where one of the staff came over and gave it a quick clean up as well as bringing us the menus.
Shortly after they returned and took our order, I really love it when there is table service in a cafe instead of your untrained hands being trusted to carry multiple hot drinks from the counter to your seat, allowing me to ask what the soup of the day was (pea and ham).
I opted for the special soup with bread and a super fruits Teapig whilst my partner went for a white chocolate rocky road and a hazelnut mocha. Naturally the rocky road arrived at the same time as the drinks but in true shameful blogger style I made my partner wait whilst I took a couple of pictures before he could even have a sip of his drink.
My partner had never tried a white chocolate rocky road before so was fairly swayed towards it to try something new and his comments seemed positive enough when I asked him to provide his thoughts. After an awkward and slightly panicked glare he said: “Just as sweet as expected with the oreos being an unusual but pleasing twist”.
And as we were chatting away, about the randomly dull stuff you would expect two people that have been together very nearly seven years to talk about, the strickingly vibrant green pea and ham soup arrived.
The soup was light and airy and full of flavour to really give a comforting and homely vibe but also a professionally prepared and cooked finish. It was a real joy to eat and even as it cooled slightly, as we chatted away and I ate slowly, it still remained pleasing to the palette.
I believe the bread is made in the cafe but as I have not asked cannot confirm for sure but whoever makes it is the best bread maker I have ever encountered. Looking at it you could imagine it to be heavy and overwhelming against the light looking soup but on picking this up to cut it open to put some butter on it you find it to be as light and airy as a cloud. Yet dunking it into the soup it managed to hold its form and instead soaked up just the right levels of soup to not go soggy and fall apart. If I could make bread even a quarter as good as that roll I would be very happy as it honestly may well have been sent from the heavens. Divine.
As my partner wished he had ordered the soup as well, after I let him try a little of mine and realising the bread would not at all be the heavy stodge he fears, I said I was ready to grab myself a cake to go and head off back home; maybe that means I can persuade him in for another visit soon!
The chocolate brownie might not look like much but this was seriously intense with a dark richness about it whilst also being incredibly soft, moist and again airy. It tasted like real melted chocolate had been mixed into the cake before cooking to give it that chocolate whack but I really am not the baking expert I once was and would not like to say for certain. What I do know is that, despite the richness probably stopping this from being a reality, if you gave me a tray of this I would happily eat it all.
If you are in the Addiscombe area it is well worth going in and even just enjoying something from their extensive list of hot and cold drinks but their breakfasts, sandwiches, warm dishes, cakes and in fact everything on their food menus and to go section are raved about by regular visitors if you want a bite to eat too.
You can find The Tram Stop Cafe at 231 Lower Addiscombe Road, CR0 6RD