Breakfast · Cafe · Cakes and Desserts · Eating out · working mum

New Day Cafe (Central MK)

I like to occasionally mix-up the monotony and occasional loneliness of working from home (which I have been doing for 2 years now thanks to Covid-19), by sometimes treating myself to a more lively working location. The New Day Cafe is perfect for this for many reasons:

  1. It is centrally located (CMK)
  2. It has great (free) wifi
  3. It has plugs and booths to work at
  4. It has snazzy looking furnture
  5. They make an amazing hot-chocolate

Although one could work at any cafe in MK (in theory) this one has a work-vibe, perhaps because it is at the bottom of an office block. I often see other people on their laptops too, so I don’t feel self-conscious. It is definitely not a place to take the kids as it is not really aimed at them and would be distracting to those who are working, but I don’t mind, my kids have loads of cafes they can eat in.

Another perk for those who love light – this place has floor-to-ceiling windows, so it gets a tremendous amount of light.

The food menu here is limited in choice but they offer just enough breakfast and lunch options for its clientele. I love their breakfast baps (bacon and hash browns) and cookies. They do have a great drink selection and one of the best hot chocolates in town because it is Biscoff flavour, it is absolutely delicious. It can get pretty busy in the mornings so I recommend giving it a try later in the day.

So if you are looking for places to work or study, this is a great option.

Opening hours are 8am to 4pm mid-week.

Additional information

Address: Ashton House, Silbury Boulevard, MK9 2AH

Booking: Not required

Website: Facebook only

Parking: Right outside, purple zone costs 50p hour.

Breakfast · Cafe · Eating out

The Bean (Stony Stratford)

At the weekend I took my kids and my mum to Stony for a bit of light shopping and a nice breakfast. Stony has a lot of great eateries, and this is another that I have never tried before. For anyone who is confused, it used to be called “The Coffee Bean”.

How to describe the breakfast? The food tasted like diner-style, tasty, basic but delicious with a low price but, they have the benefit of being in a great location on Stony Stratford high street, and it does not look like a diner; in fact it looks and feels pretty special inside as it used to be a chemist and it looks like it dates back at least 100 years. It has beautiful original apothecary drawers that hold herbs and medicines; retaining most of its features/shelving makes it very warm and appealing. And for an extra bonus, we found a load of hand-written messages on napkins inside the drawers (yes my little one was being nosey). She found pictures and wishes and notes, it was so lovely.

It was busy (being Saturday morning) but we managed to find a seat inside; although they also have a large outdoor area, which is heated as an added benefit and they have blankets; so no need to worry if it’s too busy inside.

The price point was very good value, surprisingly so for Stony. Mum and I had the early bird breakfast special (which is served between 8am-11am) which is a 6 piece breakfast, although technically it was really a 7 piece if you count each hashbrown, but really 8 piece if you include the toast; and unlimited tea or coffee. So a “6” piece breakfast with tea and toast for £6.50, now you really cannot go wrong for that price; and my eggs were runny, as I requested. They also offer 4, 8 and 10 piece breakfasts – I love being able to choose, because I am fussy! They had a lot of options that you don’t get everywhere like black pudding, fried toast and the option of fresh or cooked tomatoes.

They have a great kids menu for lunch and mains; lots of good options. I would have liked an alternative for kids who don’t eat cooked breakfasts (like my fussy 5 year old), pancakes are a definite winner for kids – just for future reference (in case the Bean read this). My son had a kids cooked breakfast; and I ordered a toasted tea cake for my daughter; they were both very pleased.

Seating is a bit basic, but that doesn’t tend to bother other people like it does me, and it can be a bit of squish inside, particularly when full, but it felt warm and inviting and it seemed friendly and like they have a lot of regulars.

They also have a great selection of home-made pastries and cakes; the caramelised onion sausage roll was delicious. The cakes were nice, though a little on the sweet side for me.

Additional Information

Parking: Short and long stay car parks at O’dells yard and similar are nearby but a few minutes walk.

Booking: It appears they only take walk-ins.

Website: Facebook only, but appears to be kept up to date.

Note: They are closed on sundays

Afternoon Tea · Breakfast · Cafe · Cakes and Desserts · Dinner · Eating out · Street-Food · Take-aways

Milton Keynes Foodie 2021 Review

Now is my opportunity to recommend a whole bunch of great eateries that I have been enjoying all year (or for many years), many of which haven’t made it to a dedicated blog post. So if you want to know what and where you should be eating in 2022, look no further…

Take-Aways

Best Chinese take-away: Sam’s Chinese in Peartree Bridge, MK6 3BX (01908 695695)

Okay so the location has a lot to be desired, but Sam’s has been my go-to chinese take-away for the last couple of years. They are generous with their meat in their chow meins and I can recommend their curries, ribs and satay.

Best Pizza take-away: Oleevo Pizza (in Broughton)

Absolutely delicious and authentic italian pizza, this is my husband’s favourite, he loves thin bases. I love the tomato and garlic bread in particular, as it is difficult to find that anywhere. I also appreciate that they seem to understand young children and offer plain pasta, my 5 year old is still in her plain pasta phase! The only downside I have found is that even though we live within 3 miles of the take-away, they will not deliver, even though it says they deliver within 3 miles.

Best American: Percy’s BBQ (in Crownhill)

You may have noticed if you have read more then one of my posts that I love brisket and Percy’s BBQ do a great brisket burger; in addition their gravy is outstanding and don’t get me started on their malt milkshake (which arrive in a cute bottle), so delicious. If you like malt, like I do, you should also try their malt icecream cookie dessert.

Best Mexican takeaway: Taco Shack

Best Chicken: Kings Comfort Food

Restaurants, Pubs and Cafes

Best Breakfast:

Codebreakers Cafe

I have two breakfast favourites. Codebreakers has comfy seats, a delicious cooked breakfast and great service. Location is not as pretty as some.

Nonna’s

Nonna’s looks good inside and out and they have the slightly more elevated breakfast experience such as poached egss on sourdough; though be aware that service can be slow sometimes.

Best Afternoon Tea:

Teapots of Olney

Definitely my first choice for a cream tea (and lunch), and if you have a tighter budget, teapots is definitely more cost-effective and the scones are worth every penny. They also have amazing homemade cakes.

French Affaire

If you want a more extravagant full afternoon tea experience and have a bigger budget, this is a delightful and beautiful french patisserie experience.

Best Dinner:

I have had a lot of great dinners this year, the Swan at Salford probably comes in second place, but my best meals of the year have been at…

The Cross Keys

Breakfast · Cafe · Cakes and Desserts · Eating out

Game Changer Kitchen (Giffard Park)

We have been meaning to try this lovely little cafe for the longest time; and it’s only round the corner from us, so no more excuses (I said in my head to no one in particular).

Well, I was right, it is all three of those things, a cafe, lovely and little. Little being the downside because it was terribly busy when we visited on a Saturday morning; in fact, there was only a sofa available to us; so we took it and hoped a table would open up…and it did.

What beautiful decor – for me anyway, it is definitely on the girlier side of the spectrum. Like Madonna meets pinkie pie (from My Little Pony) meets boudoir. Sav and I loved it.

Even better is they made her a unicorn milkshake, which was not technically on the menu. Nate had an oreo milkshake, Colin had Biscoff and I had a Biscoff Hot Chocolate. Well, the milkshakes (and the Hot Choc) were special, they all tasted delicious and they really did look the part too; I shall definitely be coming back for more milkshakes.

For brunch (which they serve all day) I had Biscoff pancakes, Nate had Oreo and Sav had Nutella and strawberries. Once again they looked and tasted great, big fluffy, American-style pancakes and the portions were generous, in fact, I couldn’t finish all of mine.

Colin’s breakfast looked delicious too, however, he said that the flavours were not quite right for him, and it was a little under-seasoned. He had the Salmon, avocado, and poached eggs on sourdough toast. I almost wished I had ordered that, it looked so delicious, and I love me some sourdough.

We took some brownies on our way out of the door; Sav’s unicorn brownie looked good and she loved it. However, my Biscoff brownie was fine but nothing out of the ordinary, taste-wise. However, they had a lot on offer, so I definitely plan to try a few more…they look so good and they change the line-up pretty frequently.

Overall I would say it is a lovely little cafe, that I will try to visit again, but on a less busy day. The staff were very friendly and helpfully found us a seat when we arrived and made a special drink for our daughter. If it is not too cold, they also have some outdoor seating. Another bonus if you have kids, is that there is a park right around the corner, you know to burn off 1/8 of a milkshake. 😉

Another bonus is that they do a lot of special events; some that I noticed on their Facebook page included: Princess tea parties, Christmas afternoon tea, Christmas wreath making, dessert night, mummy meet-ups, The Greatest Showman bottomless brunch, and other movie-themed brunches/teas. So it is a must to keep checking their Facebook page because they seem to have a new dessert/new drink or new event almost every week…which is pretty exciting really. In fact, I just saw a Baileys hot chocolate on offer, which I haven’t had in years, so I might just have to pop over soon.

Additional Information

Address: Unit 3, Knebworth Gate, Giffard Park, MK14 5QD

Website: https://www.thegamechangerkitchen.com/

Parking: On site parking, but it gets full at weekends. There is further parking just across the road at the local centre.

Cafe · Cakes and Desserts · Eating out

L’Atelier by French Affaire (Stony Stratford)

I remember hearing that this great new place opened up during Easter this year; and all I could see on social media was crazy long queus for the “waffles on a stick”. I waited until the crowds calmed down a little and realised that this little cafe is more than just waffles. They have taken the best from French Affaire (in my opinion) and opened up a cafe selling the one thing that truly makes them special – pattiserie. Every time I have eaten at French Affaire it was always the desserts that stood out for me. Therefore it is exciting so see a little spot that sells only their incredible desserts.

I have been for a take-away and I have sat inside, both are great. Though the inside is small it is worth it, if you can get a table, as the seating is classy and very comfortable. They have even managed to fit a small toilet into this quaint space.

I took my kids along at the weekend recently as a little treat. I had the strawberry, white chocolate and pistachio delice dessert with the strawberry mousse filling (which I have had before) and it is was absolutely devine, utter perfection. In fact it looked so good I almost felt bad for cutting into it, but it does indeed look as good as it tastes.

My husband had the brioche feuilletee with a caramel filling (they also had nutella and raspberry filling), which he enjoyed. It’s kind of like a brioche donut. The fillings are generous with all the desserts.

The kids shared a waffle on a stick, which after tasting I almost, almost wished I had ordered. They had a waffle with chocolate sauce and smarties and chocolate balls. You only get one topping included, so I paid extra so they could choose a topping each.

The price tag here is higher than a traditional (english) cafe, but I believe the price reflects the level of skill and French artisan that goes into the cakes and pattiseries. The price range on the cake stand was from £3.95 to £4.95 per pattiserie.

It looks elegant and it tastes elegant. This is a place to go for a little taste of French luxury.