Saturday, 28 December 2013

Express Closed

The blog is sad to report the demise of another Central Road new business.

The Express-O-Cafe, which opened to much fanfare back in October (well actually not that much fanfare - more a meeting of a local fan appreciation society than a fan fair). However open they did, and coffee they made and enjoy some I did at the time.

Unfortunately though the numbers of customers they needed to get through the door exceeded the number who actually came through it and last week they sold their last breakfast, gave their new coffee machine a final clean and closed the door for the last time.

I wondered at the time how well they would do, especially in Central Road's fairly saturated market for coffee, breakfast and sandwiches but I wanted to see them succeed, just like I want to see anyone who pours their savings and all their efforts into a new venture do well. I am sad to see them go.

The space is coming back into occasional use by the Sheesh Mangal restaurant next door who were letting the space to Express-O-Cafe. They have now reopened the internal door joining the two shops and unless and until they can let it out to another business they plan to use the space for special events and to extend their Sunday morning all you can eat buffet which they introduced a few weeks ago.

5 COMMENTS (Add Yours Now!):

guest said...

Unfortunately, I and possibly othrrs thought it was associtated with Sheesh Mangal and therefore avoided it - I had one meal in SM once and it was appalling, and then I also found that there hygiene rating was very low. Unless a coffee bar has Costa on it, it seems difficult to do well.

Nichu said...

There are at least three caf├ęs serving fry-ups on the high street. Although they all seem to do well, I don't think we needed another one. I like going to Costa as the staff are all friendly and you don't feel obliged to buy anything more than a coffee.

Regarding shopping on the high street I do feel awkward frequenting places where no one else is there. Places have to make a profit but I don't like it when you're constantly turning down extras such as more drinks, cakes, side orders etc. it just puts me off and I end up staying at home.

Guest said...

Like guest below, I thought Sheesh Mangal was directly or indirectly involved here and as the latter was one of only two places to score 0 out of 5 in Food Standards hygiene inspections (and was only an interconnecting door away), we were far from tempted!

I'm sorry it did not work out for the family, but I doubt we'd ever chance going near any new eatery that shares a doorway with a business, which the Food Standards Agency have classified as scoring zero (i.e. the lowest possible score) for hygiene!

guest2 said...

A cafe needs to be a bit different to succeed here I think. Costa is a success as it's comfy, welcoming and does good coffee and cake and so is an all day round destination where you'd be happy to linger rather than eat and leave. The new tea room in Cheam is a good example and seems to be doing well. More for WP please?

Andrew (the former WP Blogger) said...

Costa has a winning formula - comfortable chairs, and simple snacks and cakes. Costa has a 'home from home' feel to it and is a place where you are happy to linger and meet friends. Appeal to the mums and you're also on to a winner - much to the annoyance of those who moan about not being able to move in there without tripping over yet another pram!

Sadly I'm not surprised that Express-O, with its tiled floor and hard chairs, failed. There are three food-centred cafes in Worcester Park already, so a fourth was always going to struggle.

Costa's formula is so simple - it's beyond me why others don't emulate it.

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