I was in Great Yarmouth for the rather marvellous Out There Festival and feeling peckish after witnessing some amazing circus went in search of breakfast. Proceeding down the Golden Mile I observed that many establishments were offering the All Day Breakfast for low low prices which I have no doubt meant low low quality. Then I spotted Hooray Henry’s amongst the economy selection and headed in…….
You will find Hooray Henry’s opposite the Pie
Looks good on the surface
The Norfolk Brunch seemed to fit the bill
A shabby chic selection of tableware
I do like to be beside the seafood
Hooray Henry Himself
The serving hatch at the shabby chic café, or is it a beach hut?!
The toast (better late than never)
Ruskages, at least they didn’t taste too much like dog biscuits.
Cracking Yolk, shame about the white
Cabinet contained cling-filmed cakes, fresher for longer
Upon entering – If you are a fan of the shabby chic style then they certainly have the look nailed on. It's bright and clean and has a nice fresh feel; All seaside stripes and polka dots and mis-matched tableware. The strong identity seems to exude character and confidence. Cath Kidston would be creaming herself. A nice selection of chairs and tables outside on the decking and as you enter a front and back room with well distributed tables makes for a good use of the space. They got the facade right. 8/10
Service – This is a family run establishment and they were very welcoming. The owners daughter was very smiley and attentive when we arrived and I was initially impressed with her enthusiasm. Grandmother offered as much free tea as you could drink and mum in the kitchen would pop her head out and ask ‘if everything was okay?’ In fact that question was asked more than half a dozen times whilst we were there, and definitely at least twice to cover the very slow toaster. A bit too intrusive perhaps? All done innocently, but by the end I didn't want anymore free tea, I just wanted to be on my way. 6/10
Contents – 2 sausage, 2 bacon, 1 egg, 1 tomato, mushrooms, beans in a pot, toast & preserves, pots of tea. 4/10
Presentation – When it arrived I thought it was lacking something, but for what was on the plate it looked okay, although not overly appetising. I felt disappointed, but maybe it was a good thing there wasn't so much of it. 4/10
The food – I started my enquiries with the tomato, it was distinctly average and I've a feeling it may have been microwaved. The beans definitely had, one of my pet hates. What really showed is that they hadn't even been stirred, cold on the top and red hot in the middle, that's just lazy. I tried the ‘Norfolk’ mushrooms and they tasted a bit weird and dried out. The ‘local’ bacon wasn't a particularly good cut, salty and overcooked, I'm thinking a victim of re-heating, and it was cold by the time the toast arrived. I can't recall having ever been served toast after the breakfast. It made for a clunky hiatus whilst the waitress hovered between the kitchen hatch and the table, clearly embarrassed by the delay, everything wasn't really okay. When the toast did come at least it was decent thick cuts of seedy wholemeal and white crust. What a let down the sausages were though. They looked cheap and tasted cheap, deep fried and lacking in character and overwhelmingly rusk. The white of the egg was overly oily and limp, but surprisingly the yolk was really rich and tasty, definitely free range and probably the best thing on the plate. 3/10
Value for money – For £6.99 I would have expected quality and quantity. I'm afraid infini-tea doesn't count. Over priced for what it was. 4/10
Veggie option – Not on the all day side. My girlfriend went for the Norfolk rarebit which she said was alright, but the chips that came with it were far from gourmet and the accompanying mayo was catering pack.
Overall – There are a plethora of cafes in Great Yarmouth serving ‘what the public wants’ and for the large part I would avoid them. I don't want Tescos value, and it certainly doesn't make for perfection. I thought I was going to get a good deal from Hooray Henry's, and initial impressions were good, but the cheap ingredients and lack of proper cooking just let them down. On the question of is everything okay, yes I could have complained, but it would have felt like kicking a puppy, because they were making an effort, but perfection is not just about the style, you have to back it up with content. And had I said, well actually no, its not okay, what were they actually going to do about it? Cook me more cheap ingredients badly? Give me a free pot of tea? Nothing Great about this cafe in Yarmouth. 5/10