Lets Do Cafe, Fore Street

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EE RecommendsThis originally appeared on Gower The Gourmand on the 22nd July 2012

I have to admit that this post has been a little delayed, but the reputation of this place has stuck in my head as the benchmark for ‘how a cafe should be’.

Lets Do Cafe has been in Fore St since 2001 and ever since it started, it has had an ethos that it only uses locally sourced ingredients and passes them on to their customers at an affordable price.  This ethos has given the cafe a reputation for using good ingredients and makes the experience much more delightful.  The breakfasts in this establishment are formidable to say the least.  But they are truly ‘all-day breakfasts’, and if I am right in thinking there are very few places inExeter certainly in the centre that provide a similar offering.
If you have read my previous posts and cafe reviews, you’ll know that I do go on about this place.  It is my benchmark, so I thought it a good time to come back and see if they were still doing what they did best.  And I am glad to say they were.

Lets Do Cafe is very orange, it is a prominent thing that you notice when you enter the cafe.  The walls and much of the decor is either red or orange, which is nice if you like the colour but not if you don’t.  I happen to love orange to I won’t complain too much about the decor and the interior.  There are not many tables in the cafe, and this is one of the downsides to their location in Fore St.  However their small size ensures that the kitchen can cope with the orders and keeps costs down which adds to the romance of this funny little place.  There were at least three or four parties who came and poked their head around the door and went away again when they saw that all the tables were taken.

The menu is pretty average in terms of prices.  Given the way it is sourced locally and the overheads that, I imagine have to be covered, the prices are reasonable on some things but more on others.  The coffee was reasonably priced, but the tea was more expensive than I was used to but, take a closer look as they only serve loose leaf tea blended in Devon.  And it was a fantastic cuppa!

The quality and taste of the food was amazing, the sausage was thick and dense and full of flavour, the eggs although overly runny for my liking were delicious and the whole thing just went amazingly together.  Others in my party had similar things from the menu, all varying in price and size but the one thing that we all took away was that the food tasted wonderful.  Great things about the food, the service was however a little flakey but all is explained and this didn’t seem to be a ‘typical’ day.

Our party of four was served by a girl who was very pleasant in manner but a little short on pleasantries and patience.  When Tori and I sat down to wait for the other two (who were late!) she seemed quite insistent that we order our drinks sooner than later, this wasn’t verbally communicated but through her body language we could perceive that waiting to order our drinks as soon as the others in our party arrived, was not something she wanted to do.  This did put us on edge somewhat so we ordered what we wanted to drink and relatively quickly our drinks arrived.

As soon as the other two of our party arrived, she asked if we wanted to order food.  Slightly astonished (given they’d not even looked at the menu) we had to insist we were given more time.  The service from then on was absolutely fine, although one of our party had ordered fried potatoes which were forgotten from the order.  The chef was very good as he said that as they had been forgotten he wouldn’t charge us for them.  When they did come out, the lady serving us didn’t even say a word of apology which was highly unusual.  We later found out she was helping out and she hadn’t really done this sort of work before, which to be fair, admonished any annoyance that I had felt up to that point.

My concluding thoughts are that, despite the slightly flakey service, this was not something that I will look at as a black mark against this wonderful little cafe.  The food is simply lovely and I will be returning again and again for as long as my arteries will take it, and I urge my readers to also experience what a proper cafe should feel like when it is done properly.

They have a website too, http://www.letsdocafe.com where you can find background info and their menu too.  See for yourself, experience it too!

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