Grasshopper Café

A blazing log in the wood-burning stove in the back room of Grasshopper Cafe in Hope.Two years ago, Grasshopper Café contacted me on twitter to say that it was opening in Hope, in the heart of the Peak District. I duly put a star on Google Maps to mark its location and then, if I’m honest, I rather forgot about it. Last Monday, planning my route back from Sheffield to my Dad’s in North Wales, I noticed the aforementioned star and thought I would drive through the Peak District and call in along the way…

From the outside, Grasshopper Café could be mistaken for a typical village tea room. However, anything more than a casual glance reveals that there’s a lot more to it than that, with the A-board and signs on the walls proudly proclaiming its speciality coffee heritage. The coffee in question comes from Smith Street Coffee Roasters from Sheffield, with its Dark Peak blend on espresso, Five Arches on decaf and a guest espresso on the third grinder.

If you don’t fancy coffee, there’s a range of interestingly-named teas from Birdhouse Tea Company (also from Sheffield), while if you are hungry, there are full breakfast and lunch menus, plus homemade cakes, all prepared in the small kitchen tucked away beside the counter.

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Abriachan Campsite and Cafe

The sign at the entrance to the Abriachan Campsite and CafeThis is easily the weirdest (in a nice way) café I’ve ever been to. Halfway between Drumnadrochit and Inverness on the Great Glen Way, the Abriachan Campsite and Café is a welcome stop-off point for hikers and cyclists. I love what the owner, Sandra, is trying to do and she deserves everyone’s support, although I appreciate that the basic facilities might not be for everyone. If you’re a hiker or mountain-biker though, you really shouldn’t mind, and it’s not every day you get to share your coffee with hens and a pig!

If you’re doing the northern section of the Great Glen Way, you really should stop by and say hello. If you’re not, you really should consider walking it, just for the pleasure of popping in and enjoying the fine coffee and warm welcome. You can even stop by if you’re in the area in your car, just as long as you don’t mind hiking a couple of kilometres from the nearest parking. It really is worth it!

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