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Review: Find the hot grill of your dreams at this Preston Markets coffee shop

Posted on - 3rd December, 2022 - 7:00pm | Author - | Posted in - City Centre, Food & Drink, Opinion, Preston City Centre, Preston News, Restaurants in Preston, What's On in Preston
Cherry Pie toastie and fries
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Next up in Blog Preston’s series of Preston’s best and worst reviewed eateries is Cherry Pie Coffee and Co in the City Centre.

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Situated indoors at Preston Markets in Earl Street, Cherry Pie has been praised for ‘service with a smile’ and ‘food cooked perfectly’.

I don’t frequent that part of the city often due to all the roadworks, traffic jams, one way systems and numerous square, grey Stealth Bollards that are now dotted around Preston like they’ve fallen out of God’s pocket; presumably because someone in the planning department missed the fun of seeing cars hanging off the Fishergate Bollard like giant fidget spinners.

The market was chilly, but I was nice and toasty as soon as I stepped inside the coffee shop, and received an immediate cheery greeting. As I waited in line, the most attractive toasted sandwich I’ve ever seen drifted past me like the Grill from Ipanema. I think I might have gawked at it. Unlike the tall and tan Girl From Ipanema (who wasn’t available at a reasonable £3.50) it was fat and crispy- and I was having the cheese and onion version whether it made eye contact with me or not. I also had a side order of fries because I was asked if I wanted one and I was still distracted by the toastie. 

I also ordered a full English breakfast for £6.95, a mug of tea for £1.50 and a coffee renoir for £3.50, bringing the bill to a total of £17.45. Then I sat down by the window to people watch. 

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A gigantic coffee renoir arrived first, followed shortly by my toastie with fries and my cooked breakfast. It’s notoriously hard to make a full English look good in a photo, but even my amateurish snaps couldn’t make it unattractive. The bacon was crispy – as I’d requested – the skinny sausages were meaty and packed with flavour, and the egg was perfectly cooked with a runny yolk. 

Cherry Pie full English breakfast
You’re going to need a bigger throat

There were two doorsteps of toast, beans, a golden, well-seasoned hash brown that seemed to be home made, topped by a slice of black pudding and a grilled tomato. There was also a generous portion of my nemesis, The Mushroom, that looked so unthreatening that I actually ate one. That was a mistake, as it tasted exactly like mushroom, and mushroom tastes exactly like an old straw mattress that a medieval witch has died on.

However, to someone such as my mother Yvonne who often says that she loves mushrooms that are grilled so they are ‘really crispy’, they would have been a joy. Fortunately, she wasn’t with me so we didn’t have to have the argument that inevitably follows about whether mushrooms can ever actually become crispy. (They can’t, it’s like saying you love snakes when they’re really fluffy, and I will die on that hill.) 

The whopper of a cheese and onion toastie was as good as it looked with tangy cheese and sweet caramelised onion on top as well as inside, and the side of fries were hot and crunchy and as ungreasy as fries can be. 

As I was by myself I ate the breakfast minus the mushrooms, and asked for the rest of the toastie and the bruiser of a coffee renoir to go, as it wouldn’t be going down without a fight. When I got home I cut it in two with a pair of kitchen scissors to keep one half for the next day, and still couldn’t finish the pieces. 

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Cherry Pie coffee renoir
Mount Rushmore, or just a gigantic coffee renoir?

Cherry Pie Coffee and Co deserves every accolade it’s received. It’s fantastic value, especially considering that everything that I ordered was fresh, perfectly cooked and of excellent quality – much of the ingredients having come from the neighbouring market stalls. The service was spot on and the staff went above and beyond with every customer, which is evident by how many they seemed to know by name. 

The vibe of the market has echoes of all the good qualities of the old Indoor Market during the seventies and eighties, being friendly and bustling, with none of the less pleasant qualities like the smell when you accidentally use the fish market entrance. 

Cherry Pie has also retained some of the good qualities of the old Market Cafe, as it was impossible to feel alone there even by myself, but unlike at the old cafe, my heart didn’t sink when someone sat next to me. Fortunately it turned out to be a lovely lady called Maureen who’d been Christmas shopping and was treating herself to a hot drink before catching the bus home. I told her that Cherry Pie makes one of the best breakfasts in Preston and showed her my coffee renoir because I was still excited about it. I’ll be back. 

Read more: See the latest Preston news and headlines

Have you become the creepy weirdo who sits next to people in cafes and shows them photos of food? Stop it. Or tell us about it in the comments.

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