We are lucky enough to live in a little part of the world that seems to have new and exciting eateries and drinkeries springing up all over the show. The newest addition to the Prestwich scene is African-Cuban fusion cocktail bar Cape to Cuba. Convinced this was going to become a stalwart of Bury New Road, Andy and I were determined to be there On Opening Night so that, so that when we’re old and grey we can tell our grandchildren about how we were there from The Beginning, man. We were so cool and young and hip.
So we put on our gladrags. And by gladrags, I mean I put on a leopard print vest top I bought from Lidl two years ago and slick of Ruby Woo lipstick, and off we trotted to the hottest ticket in town.
We were not disappointed. Given the weather was less than conducive to wandering about, the place was full of hardy Prestwichians, ready to sample all the rum. All of it.
Cape to Cuba is primarily a cocktail bar and boasts an extensive cocktail menu including some really interesting options like Kaap Stad: a lime, redbush tea syrup, rhubarb infused rum and soda cocktail. Or Robben Island Iced Tea, of which I advise you to drink only one if you have commitments the following morning.
If cocktails aren’t your thing they also have a good selection of bottled beers and cider and mocktails on the menu if you’re into that sort of thing.
There’s plenty of snacky food on the menu including the bacon and plantain fritters that we really enjoyed.
The owners have a done a great job in making the place feel comfy and like somewhere you could stay all evening. Brightly coloured walls and natural wood tables feel quite smart and in true Hipster fashion the drinks are mostly served in glass-jars. The atmosphere is chilled and vibrant, with some eclectic music in the background. There was a wide array of ages and backgrounds enjoying themselves and I accidentally got embroiled in quite a lively debate about gender equality. (Lads, a word of advice: if you’re trying to suggest that we no longer need to talk about gender equality because ‘we’ve achieved it’, I’m going to have something to say…)
We went back this afternoon to sample some more food. From 10:00 – 14:00 they are currently serving a really good value breakfast including Full South African (with Boerworse sausages) or Full Cuban (with chorizo) alongside a traditional Full English. The site where Cape to Cuba is now used to be a traditional greasy spoon so it’s good to see that little nod.
We each had a sandwich. There was a bit of a delay in waiting for our food, which is only to be expected on the first weekend while a place sorts out its systems and finds its flow. The delay was acknowledged by the team, but we really didn’t mind. It was a rainy Sunday afternoon and we were engaged deeply in what we thought was the best album of the 2000’s. (Answer’s on a postcard…). The food was worth the wait. (Clearly Amy Winehouse, Back to Black….)
I suppose before I went I was worried about the competition that Cape to Cuba might pose to some of the Prestwich stalwarts: All The Shapes, Cuckoo and newer arrivals such as Crooked Man or Basil and Lily, but in all honesty I don’t think that is much of a risk. Each place is doing their own thing and doing it really well and one of the reasons I love living here is that it is a place that can support such a variety of different establishments: no one is coming close to the standard of food at All the Shapes, if you want a pizza you know you won’t be dissapointed at Cuckoo, if you’re after a really top notch wine its Basil and Lily.
And for a rum cocktail and bowl of bacon and plantain fritter, the new favourite place to head to is Cape to Cuba.
Cape to Cuba, 429 Bury New Rd, M25 1AF: http://www.capetocuba.co.uk.
Opening times: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday – 16:00 – 22:00; Friday – 16:00 till Late; Saturday & Sunday – 10:00 till Close