McCTaffs Tea Room, Swindon

Dates visited: Mondays 10th December 2018, 7th January 2019 and 4th February 2019

A beef and horseradish sandwich, chocolate and cherry brownie, and green(ish) tea for £8.

In and attempt to keep up with modern trends, The Brunel Centre in Swindon has recently rebuilt the bridge that links its two sections on either side of Canal Walk, and turned it into a dining section, with multiple food outlets and branded it ‘The Crossing’. Although in The Brunel centre and opening at about the same time as The Crossing, McCTaffs isn’t quite part of that, but is just a few steps away. Despite being close to so many other food outlets, McCTaffs can get quite busy at lunchtime, even on weekdays.

A chicken and bacon sandwich, cheese scone, and pot of tea came to £8.50.

Pink is very much the colour of choice at McCTaffs, with not just the signage but also the trays, paper napkin dispensers, table cloths, and even some of the teapots being pink. The menu is relatively short, offering a range of light snacks, a soup, cakes (including gluten-free cakes), afternoon teas, and tea, coffee and soft drinks. They have a loyalty card scheme and McCTaffs clearly already have numerous regular customers that the staff know well.

‘Sandwich of the day’ chocolate cake and a pot of tea, for £9.

On my first visit, a beef and horseradish sandwich, chocolate and cherry brownie (very chocolatey) and green tea (actually rather yellow and with a taste that was past its best) came to £8. On my second visit, a chicken and bacon sandwich, cheese scone, and pot of tea cost £8.50. On the third visit, a beef, horseradish sauce and onion sandwich, chocolate cake (gluten free, as were all the cakes on offer) and a pot of tea cost £9. On all three visits the cake part of the meal was by far the best part.

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