Restaurant Review: Gourmet Scoffs

This little slice of sandwich heaven (click here for more details) is tucked inside a terrace of tall, venerable houses opposite the elegant 1930s-styled Parade Gardens. You’d never guess from the tiny glass frontage and crowded ground floor, with all the fresh ingredients laid out enticingly on a long deli counter, that there are two more floors of seating upstairs – but given the queue out the door at lunchtimes, it’s certainly necessary. Unfortunately in such a pleasant old house, with high ceilings, sash windows and shutters, the interior décor is fairly shabby, but that’s really my only criticism.

The menu is lengthy enough to make your choice agonizing – covering sandwiches, burgers, salads, hot dishes, soups and all-day breakfasts – but rest assured that whatever you pick will be delicious! I went for the roast beef sandwich with horseradish, and it was lovely. The beef was cooked to perfection, just the right side of rare, and the bread was freshly-baked and delicious. The service was also commendably fast, and the staff, despite the lunchtime rush, were cheerful and friendly.

This is a charming place for lunch, and if the weather’s fine, you can also get many of the things on the menu to take away and grab a stripy deckchair in the shade of the Parade Gardens’ cherry trees, for a perfect British picnic. Huzzah!