At the time of writing I was thinking, ‘I am sat on top of a frigate, or a barge, maybe even a tanker’. OK, so I actually wasn’t but strange things like this do frequent my mind. I won’t blame the coffee for this just the fact I am fast approaching 40 and trying to keep up with my two very modern sons. You see today’s location is what was once Vospers the ship builders, over looking Ocean Village marina in Southampton, now also ageing heavily compared to it’s more modern surroundings.
The cafe itself is a uber friendly cafe that styles itself out – where Chesterfield furniture meets 2017, the kind of place I would love my man cave (aka the garage) to be like. You can sink yourself into a comfy wing back whilst supping on your long black coffee. Some of the items look like they have come from your Nan’s house clearance, yet all in their perfect place and bang on trend.
Old black and white pictures don the walls, I assume of the Mettrick’s owner that show family gatherings and the like. Drinking in the view is accompanied by some Ibiza style music and I am trying to place myself at Cafe Mambo…in Woolston. It works, especially in the sunshine, and I am sure once the scaffolding is down for the surrounding apartment blocks this place will be a belter in the summer. I hear a rumour DJ’s often frequent this place. Yes, DJs in a cafe. I predicted this many years ago when the mighty Power FM Cafe (now Mama’s & Papa’s, West Quay) was in full mighty swing. But rather like the 103.2 frequency itself died a death when it changed hands. Sad.
At the bar at order the delightful lady behind the beautifully varnished wood was all sweetness and light; greeting me as her ‘sweetie’ more than once. Home made cakes sat staring at me all made previously at the Mothership cafe, Bar Gate, Southampton. I could not resist the Mett Bar (flap jack base, thick layer of caramel topped with pumpkin seeds (healthy), coconut shavings. You’ll be buzzing off your nut and quite close to becoming a type 2 diabetic but hell was it worth it. For something as beautiful and home made this was all too good to be true.
Other beverages are available; fancy fizz, alcoholic drinks and God, the milkshakes. This seems to be a regular attraction in cafes recently and God bless them. All reasonably priced.
I went for the one size latte. Slightly disappointed if I am honest, served in a Cortardo size glass, fine for washing down the Mett Bar, not big enough to satisfy my milky sole. However there was plenty to choose from on the menu and more coffee roasting choices than you can shake your beans at, locally roasted. Could there be anything out of place here?
Their take on the full English looks enough to see you through the day, I can see using this ‘joker’ card for a Sunday morning to nurse a broken head after caning it the night before. The glorious additions menu tops up your breakfast creation to something mega (chutney if you please and two extra back bacon if you’re asking). Served all day.
Dinner available from midday with everything from sofa food to burgers.
BOTTOM OF THE CUP
Mettricks, Woolston seems pretty perfect, almost. Not sure if it was ‘bring your child day’ when I went but you couldn’t move for pushchairs and grandparents. My Cafe Mambo moment was drowned out by the screaming of hyper kids. Now, don’t get me wrong, being a father myself I understand the trails the little angels can bring, it was just on this occasion a little loud, louder than a nightclub, say in Ibiza.
And then there is the WiFi, or at the time of writing, the lack of it. This may not be a bad thing, after all it’s good to talk. There are times when you just want to get your head down and get blogging. Fear not the Mettricks guys are on the case and by the time you get to read this fine piece of blogging gold you’ll be sat there surfing Amazon for the furniture you are sat on.
I liked the coffee (albeit a size too small), I like the concept, food and all that it stands for. It just feels like it is ‘unfinished’, but that will all change when the apartment blocks are complete and the area finally gets time to flourish. It comes with it’s own free parking in the basement, well worth travelling for.