Darwin’s, on first impressions, is just another coffee shop among the many hundreds in Shrewsbury. Nothing special to look at from the outside, but boy prepare to be amazed by the quality of the snacks on offer.
Inside it’s tiny, with the addition of a couple of extra tables outside it can seat 8-10 persons. The owner runs the show, takes orders, cooks the food, serves tables and cleans down. And she’s a wealth of local knowledge, helpful and pleasant. What more do you need or want?
The fare on offer is snack style and includes everything from toasties, sandwiches, paninis, baked potatoes with a veritable wealth of options as to fillings. I can guarantee you there will be something to suit.
But along with those standard items, there are the crepes. These are lush. Thin batter with a good taste, a nice browning from the griddle, and folded with your choice of either sweet or savoury filling. I opted for the simple lemon and sugar, why mess with perfection is my ethos. Well, my good lady and son decided to ignore my pleas and chose a bannoffee with ice cream and a brie with cranberry. My lemon and sugar was a sensation of taste. Sweet yet held in place from being too much of a sugar overload with the fresh tartness of the lemon. The folded delight was soft, chewy and a good size, making this the perfect afternoon snack. The CO’s offering arrived on a plate with a small side salad, and it was bulging with filling. The Brie was obviously French and had melted to a gooey delight smothered with a delicious sweet cranberry sauce which offset the cheese well.
But the winning dish of the day, was, according to my son, his bannoffee version. This crepe was bulging it was so full of banana slices, smothered in toffee sauce and with three good scoops of homemade vanilla ice cream on the side.
However, it didn’t end there and I just had to try out the milkshakes. Advertised as being made with full-fat milk (what self-respecting human uses anything other) fresh fruit, ice cream and whipped cream – well sometimes you just have to suffer in the name of journalism! Oh boy. One thing to say, head down here and try them for yourselves. Amazing and worth every penny.
And the bill, for two soft drinks, one pot of tea, three crepes and that milkshake £19 – a veritable bargain. Oh, and did I mention the packet of homemade Shrewsbury biscuits we were given? Just another wee delightful touch from a cafe proprietor who truly knows the value of good customer service, the use of local quality ingredients and how to provide value for money.