“ Travel in your country or the world, and you'll find a range of different sized Caffè Ritazza's bringing the Ritazza experience to many people travelling, working, shopping, or at leisure pursuits. You'll find us in airports, railway stations and motorway service areas; high streets and shopping malls; business offices and industrial locations; educational establishments, leisure and sports venues; museums, theatres and exhibitions worldwide. „
I love my coffee.......I really can't function without it and openly admit to drinking far too much of it.
Whilst I would be very happy to visit any one of the dozens of coffee shops that you now see throughout the UK on a daily (or twice daily) basis, due to the cost, and the additional calories, I have reduced my shop bought coffee experiences to occasional Friday treats, or when I am in an airport or railway station.
The journey from Norwich to London takes just under two hours, so a coffee is pretty much an essential part of that process. Unfortunately, coffee is one thing that British Rail under is many guises has never, in my opinion, managed to get right, and I refuse to spend a ridiculous amount of my hard earned cash on something that is barely drinkable.
Up until a few years a go, the only alternative to the undrinkable, was to take a flask on the train with something prepared from home. It was certainly an option, but not really practical if you didn't want to lug an empty thermos around when in the City.
Now, however, most stations have a selection of "proper" coffee kiosks, giving travellers the ability to buy their Americano or skinny latte to go.
Caffe Ritazza is one of these - it has branches in many airports, railway stations, shopping centres etc. The size of branch varies greatly, from a large sit-down coffee shop where you can leisurely sit with a newspaper and a latte for an hour or so, to the "quick dash" kiosks such as the one at Norwich Station. Caffe Ritazza branches can be found the world over, so they must be doing something right!
This coffee shop offers decent coffee at a good price, and that is the reason for this review. Whilst competitors such as Costa and Starbucks seem to offer ever wider menus at ever larger prices, Caffe Ritazza seems to stick with a small range of coffee - Americano, Cappucino, Latte, Mocha, plus Tea, Hot Chocolate and range of smoothies. It is almost a case of "less is more" - stick at doing something well and not trying to be too clever. People want decent coffee....so give them decent coffee....simple!
There are three sizes - small, medium and large - not vente, grande, tall or anything equally confusing. I usually go for a medium, but actually this is a pretty good size, and I keep meaning to ask for a small instead as I think it would be more than adequate......but "Medium" is the word that pops out of my mouth automatically, so medium is what I will have!
My medium latte costs £2.15, which when compared with similar outlets is very good. A small costs £1.85 I think, and given the sizes are generous, I think this is excellent value for money.
If you want something to go with your coffee, you will find a small selection of biscuits, pastries, and some wonderful chocolate brownies - these cost £1 upwards, and are not as necessary as the coffee, obviously, but if your train journey is an early one, they are a good breakfast substitute!
Service is always, in my opinon, very good - time is taken to make a good coffee, but staff are always aware that commuters especially, may be in a hurry, so there is no hanging about un-necessarily.
There is nothing "special" about Ritazza - no "Wow factor"....but if you want good service, good coffee, at a good price, without having to wait for ever to be served, then you could do worse than visiting one of these kiosks when you are on your travels.