The day before Helen was due to leave good ol’ Blighty and return to New Zealand to do another calf rearing season, we decided to have lunch somewhere very local. Less than a mile from our house is Wonderland Cafe in Tangier Road, Copnor, near Baffins Pond (but up towards Copnor Bridge).
On entering Wonderland Cafe we were greeted by a friendly waitress and sat down by the window. The weather had been atrocious since Helen had been here but of course, as she was leaving the very next day the weather was changing for the better, typical. We got rather hot sitting in the window so had to move tables.
Looking around it’s quite light inside with a few pictures upon the walls, one of the Spinnaker Tower, another of Audrey Hepburn from Breakfast at Tiffany’s (I don’t recall what the others are of but after writing that last sentence perhaps they’re linked to food?) It needs either larger pictures or more colourful ones, or perhaps even a ‘living wall’ (I’m always suggesting that, I think it’s a good look :’) ). Or some plants in the window?
We browsed the menus which had a good selection of dishes to chose from, jacket potatoes, sandwiches, all day breakfasts etc., Helen and I chose the pulled pork whereas Geoff settled on fish & chips.
Sauces such as ketchup, mayonnaise and vinegar were all ‘proper’ brand names, not cheaper versions which is good to see. Geoff’s fish & chips were very tasty he told us
Our pulled pork arrived on hot plates (so too did Geoff’s F&C’s) and were much better than the ones we’d had the previous day at newly opened Chocolate Lounge in Southsea. There was more pulled pork inside the bun along with tomato and lettuce, the brioche bun wasn’t as flat and the chips were really good – although the Chocolate Lounge don’t do chips. Helen was craving a sausage and asked for one on the side. That was really lovely too, it comes from Tangiers Road Butchers shop only a hop, skip and a jump away. Salt Café at Wicor Marine use them, I remember commenting on them a while back, although I’m not sure if they still do.
There weren’t many cakes available, just two slices of coffee & walnut and a couple of cupcakes in plastic cases – I don’t really like that idea. And it’s never a good sign, generally speaking, when there are only two slices of a cake left. It’s usually yesterday’s and not quite as fresh.
BUT, how wrong I was. We all shared one slice of coffee & walnut and it WAS very fresh and really good with tons of walnuts although not really tasting of coffee, but it was still very good.
I had a nice cappuccino made from Lavazza coffee beans, and at first they mistakenly gave me a latte. I felt a bit mean not accepting it but I really didn’t want a latte. That was no problem and they quickly made me the cappuccino I’d ordered.
A good thing we noticed as we sat down, on the table were a few menus plus a stand up plastic thingy (not sure what the correct terminology is) with Wonderland’s Facebook/Instagram/Twitter details plus the password for the free wifi so we could post photos and let the world know where we were and not have to ask for the wifi password or search for the cafe on social media, if only other places did this to the world would be a happier place 😀
We had a chat with the waitresses – of which there were now two – and the owner (a young lady) was presented to us and who was also the chef.
I returned a couple of weeks later late on a lovely sunny afternoon – remember that Helen was now in NZ so the sun was shining once again – and decided to sit outside. (Hopefully next year they will perhaps have some climbing plants and some pot plants out there but at the moment there is only one hanging basket. Early days yet though, of course, it all takes time and money, otherwise it’s not unpleasant outside, it’s clean and tidy with comfortable garden furniture.
Anyway, not realising just how late it was I still didn’t ‘get it’ when the waitress in the garden mentioned that she’d already put away the seat pads etc., we thought she meant because there had been a few spots of rain which didn’t come to anything thankfully, laughed and said oh that’s ok, the seat are comfortable without them, we’re just going to have cake and a drink if that’s ok. Of course she replied.
We went back inside to chose the coffee & walnut cake again and a millionaire flapjack and shared both. I had a green tea whereas my friend had a coffee (the only other teas they have is Earl Grey or normal tea).
The coffee & walnut cake was again, very fresh and tasty (still lacking the coffee flavour though, but it didn’t really matter) and the millionaire flapjack was not for the feint hearted. Half each was plenty as it was quite sweet and rich. Very nice though.
When the waitress started getting out a mop and bucket we then realised the time. We asked what time they closed, 4pm was the answer and it had just gone past that! We apologised but were told it was fine as the owner was there still. We swiftly drank up and paid so they could go home, poor things. Although we arrived late we weren’t made to feel unwelcome whatsoever.
I find the staff friendly and efficient and wouldn’t hesitate on returning. I’ve already planned to meet another friend there the next time we meet up. I may even pop down there when I’m on my own and do a spot of blogging whilst drinking tea…and eating cake of course, any excuse.
Living life loving cake