Sunday 3 July 2011

Byfords of Holt

1-3 Shirehall Plain
NR25 6BG

Breakfast served 7 days a week 8am - noon

Holt is a lovely market town, Byfords can be found on Shirehall Plain in the town centre.

Inside is spotlessly clean and traditional.

There are a good number of tables outside too.

Just find a table and wait to be served.

Somewhere that will please vegetarians too.

Standards here are high but that is reflected in the price.

The price does include a nice hot drink though.

A chunky doorstep of toast with real butter is also included in the price.

So are a selection of really nice homemade jams.

Everything was neatly stacked when it arrived.

The beans were in a separate pot ready to be poured wherever you wanted them.

The tomato was incredibly tasty and the black pudding was out of this world.

With the egg on top of the toast, beans firmly on the plate and stack dismantled it was time to finally tuck in.

We had originally decided to visit Dubs at the hall VW festival in Holt for the day but just before setting off with the sun shining we decided to stay over and take the camper van too. This last minute decision resulted in the bare essentials (duvet, pillows and change of clothes) being thrown in the back of the van before setting off. The festival itself was really good, usually the music at VW festivals is not too great but this time a few decent bands played and the last band "Ska Face" were a top choice to end the night. The food we ate at the festival was however quite bland, particularly a serving of Paella with four tiny cubes of chicken mixed in. We woke up early and quite hungover, I went to check the food stalls at 8am to see what to get for breakfast but they were still closed. We were hungry and couldn't be bothered to wait so decided to drive into Holt town centre in the search for a fry up. We were told by a chap in a newsagent about a place a little further up the street which we found without a problem, it seemed quite expensive but we decided to try it anyway..

Upon entering - We initially decided to sit outside as the weather was nice, there was a good number of tables to choose from. After a few minutes of the sun beating down on us we decided to head inside as it was far too hot, inside there are a number of different rooms to eat in. The decor is very traditional and each table has a menu on it, your order is taken at the table. 9/10

Service - The staff are friendly and very efficient, when I informed the waiter we were sitting inside he asked if we needed a hand bringing things in. Everything arrived at good intervals and each time we were asked if we wanted anything else. 9/10

Contents - 1 sausage, 2 slices of bacon, 1 slice of black pudding, 1 fried egg, 1 hash brown, half a mushroom, 1 grilled tomato, a small pot of beans, 1 thick slice of toast with butter and a selection of homemade jams and a hot drink. 8/10

Presentation - It looked like a work of art when it arrived, most things were stacked up on the plate with the pot of beans served in a pot. Although visually stunning I did rearrange a number of things into more practical positions before I tucked in. 8/10

The food - Very high quality herby sausage and smoked back bacon that was full of flavour. The black pudding had a fantastic taste and texture as did the very long and slim hash brown. The juicy tomato tasted fantastic as did the mushroom, the beans were a good consistency. The fried egg was a tad undercooked on top of the yolk but went nicely on top of the delicious fat slice of buttered toast. I tried each of the jams and they were amazing too. 9/10

Value for money - It is not often I pay as much as £9.50 for a fry up but bearing in mind a drink was included in the price, the cafe was a real joy to be in, the service was incredibly good and the ingredients used were locally sourced top quality produce I didn't mind at all. 8/10

Veggie option - Yes, as seen on menu pic above.

Overall - When we first noticed the price was £9.50 we did consider not bothering and finding somewhere else. Im glad we decided to give it a try though as it didn't disappoint and was a real treat. No expense was spared on ingredients and you get what you pay for, delicious food and great service in a fantastic environment. If you are passing through Holt treat yourself and pop in, as far as "top end" places go this is one not to be missed. 8.5/10


  1. Very disappointing experience. Based on Fry Up Inspector rating took 3 friends to venue for Full English. All four of us presented with half a slice of black pudding carefully cut in two. One of my group took time to provide feedback to hotel only to be told half slice was due to cost and to avoid wastage. Unconvincing tale. Second World War style rationing not worth premium price.

    1. I've not been there for breakfast since 2011 so things must have changed. Half a slice of black pudding is indeed disappointing though especially considering the high price charged.