“ 39 St.Giles Street, Norwich, NR2 1JN. Tel: +44(0)1603 612790. Open: Mon - Fri 10am til 10pm, Sat 10am til 11pm, Sun 11am til 9pm. „
This is a review of The Waffle House Restaurant, situated in Norwich, Norfolk.
The restaurant opened in the city in 1978 and has become a little bit of a local restaurant institution and the basic concept has changed little since they opened. The restaurant offers a range of dishes, but mainly it has the options of either savoury or sweet waffles.
The restaurant is located quite centrally, although you might have to know it's there, as it's situated down St Giles's Street, not far from Norwich City Hall, and also near to St Giles's Car Park which is conveniently located for The Waffle House.
For those who arrive early at the restaurant, which opens at 10am every morning of the week, the breakfast waffle dishes are available, which are served until mid-day. From mid-day, the main menu is available and there is a two course lunch available until the evening for 6.95 pounds, which represents good value. The same menu is available in the evening, although without the offer, although there are often different specials available.
In terms of the ambience of the restaurant, it's friendly, but does suffer a little from a lack of space, which means that some tables are a little cramped together. There is one table quite near the entrance to the restaurant which can get quite jostled by those entering the restaurant, which does rather detract from the experience.
The main courses include only a limited number of meat dishes, but the ham with cheese sauce and mushrooms and oriental vegetable cashew stir-fry are both recommended, and are of course both served on top of a waffle. You can choose between a small waffle or a large waffle, there's usually only about a pound difference, so if you're feeling hungry, best to go for the larger option. Main courses cost between seven and nine pounds in general, which is reasonable, as they are quite filling.
As you would expect from a restaurant like this, the waffles taste superb, freshly prepared, and all the ingredients share that freshness. The meals are served quickly, but the restaurant does have a policy of cooking items from fresh, and it's surprisingly healthy cooking and ingredients, so you are unlikely to feel too guilty for over-indulging here.
Desserts are probably what people might usually associate waffles with, and the restaurant in my view does these best, with the banoffee waffle being highly recommended, as is the pecan nut waffle. There's a good choice though to suit a range of tastes (provided you like waffle) and the menu does state that they will always try and change dishes to suit the needs of the individual customers, which is a helpful touch to put on a menu. Desserts are around five pounds each, a little cheaper if opting for a small waffle, a little more if opting for a larger waffle.
As mentioned in the main courses, the portion sizes are good, but on the two occasions I've been here, it's always been lunch-time, and so it has been more than filling. For an evening meal, I personally would rather have something a little more substantial and varied, but everyone of course has different tastes, and it's definitely worth a visit here to see what it's about.
For those that don't want waffles, the menu is heavily limited, there are a couple of options, but to all intents and purposes, you'd have to choose one of the meals and ask for the waffle to be removed and just have the topping. This would rather spoil the essence of the restaurant however, but it's a real achievement for any eating establishment to be able to specialise in just one dish, do it well, and then make it successful for over 30 years.
The restaurant is open from 10.00 until 22.00 every day of the week, other than Sundays when it closes an hour earlier. The full address is 39, St Giles's Street, Norwich, NR2 1JN and their phone number is 01603 612790. They have another branch at St. Alban's, which I haven't visited, but further information is available on their web-site, which can be found at http://www.wafflehouse.co.uk/.
Overall, I'd recommend this restaurant to anyone who doesn't at least dislike waffles. I've only visited twice, by which time I had already tired a little of the concept, and I'd prefer a slightly bigger restaurant - or less packed - because the seating can be a little pushed together and people pushing past. But definitely worth a try.
Now, I've lived in Norwich for my entire life and it wasn't until very recently that I discovered the utter delight that is The Waffle House.
Upon entering, you are greeted by one of a number of very polite and cheery looking staff who very quickly seat you and present you with beautifully presented menus.
Now, a menu is not something I generally judge but the simplicity of the layout and wording made it much easier to choose from the many, many yummy treats on offer.
The ordering process is just as simple and well done as the menu - the staff are very accommodating for individual needs and there is the very handy option of replacing any waffle for rice if you fancy a lighter main course.
Turn around times are very swift - but not so quick that you feel that you're on a conveyer belt.
So, onto the food itself - all I can say is YUM.
The tastes of the toppings, as well as the waffles themselves are just divine. Everything is perfectly cooked and presented and it is a real treat to tuck into these plates full of food.
A personal favourite of mine would be from the Desserts menu:- The Banoffee Waffle. I would recommend this to anyone with a love of things sweet and satisfying!
Without a shadow of a doubt, The Waffle House is an utter treat to dine in. Whether it be for a quick bite or a full meal - I can't fault it.
In Norwich is a well kept secret, know mainly to locals. The Waffle House is hidden a very short walk from the famously colourful market. Standing facing the city hall take a short walk up past Tesco and on your right you will find a cosy looking bistro with comfortable pine furniture and a warm glow of friendliness
The Waffle House gets very busy at lunchtimes and evenings too, so it is advisable to get there early, eat out of normal dining hours or, if there six or more of you, book first. The reason for its popularity is the three golden rules for a good restaurant; good food, good service and value for money
The menu is all waffle based (ordinary or wholemeal) with fresh ingredients and salads. Breakfast is served daily until noon and starts from just under a fiver to £6.75 for a magnificent brunch of waffle topped with a choice of breakfast items, fresh juice and tea or coffee; definitely worth getting into town early for! Savoury waffles start from as little as 2.30 for a small garlic waffle going up to around seven pounds for one topped with Bolognese or cheese and ham. All the ingredients are freshly prepared and delicious with plenty of organic produce. To satisfy all appetites from the hungriest shopper to the person wanting a quick bite between stores all waffles are offered in two sizes. To accompany the main course is a delectable salad bowl, at 2.20 or 2.90. Using fresh seasonal ingredients, again as much organic as available to them, with a choice of homemade dressings
If you have room after this the best is yet to come the sweet waffles! Of course you could always skip the savouries and go straight for the sweets! Again these all come in two sizes so instead of a traditional English cream tea, why not try a sweet waffle one day for change? Plain waffles smothered in butter start from £1.90 and as there is real maple syrup on the table, (just part of the cruet set here!) a cheap mouth-watering snack is always available. The list of dessert waffles is sublime; almost any combination you choose from: fresh bananas, cream, banoffee, butterscotch sauce, spiced fruit, hot Dutch apple, chocolate mousse and extra toppings available too. One of my favourites is the pecan nut waffle served with butterscotch sauce, this has the nuts baked into the waffle as well as sprinkled on top divine! If you are too full to face a waffle but still in the mood fro something sweet then most of the toppings are available separately in a dish with cream and/or ice cream
I have been visiting this gem of a place since 1978 not long after it first opened (yeah, I know, Im old!) and have never once been let down or disappointed. An independent restaurant, staffed by a friendly, helpful young team, nothing is too much trouble and they encourage you to experiment with their menu so adapting things to your taste is perfectly feasible; we have had some fun concocting various creations over the years! There is a good selection of organic (and non-organic) wines and beers, soft drinks and hot beverages to suit all the varying preferences of my family
My teenage son has become an aficionado too and often takes his girlfriend there as it is within the range of his wallet. It is a perfect place to take vegetarian friends as pride is taken to provide a wide range of veggie options, both on the menu and on the specials each day. Care is taken to keep all vegetarian foods separate from the meats and vegetarian cheese is also provided. This snug eatery suits so many people; romantic lovers, families, gossiping friends and can also accommodate parties of up to forty people upstairs in the non smoking
Discounts and special offers are available; a two course lunch is available on the specials board for a mere £5.75. The price of a good filling, fresh meal here is very reasonable at around twenty five pounds for a two course lunch with drinks for three people. But still you can get it ten per cent cheaper if you have a student card, or like me have son who is a student. This was the place my son took me out to dine (at his expense!) for the first time and we had a wonderful time. Now he has turned eighteen he often drops in for a quick snack with an organic beer
The only drawback I have found is that if you have a nut allergy this I not the place to eat. Due to a large section of the menu including nuts and the kitchen area being small no guarantee can be offered that nut traces will not cross over into other meals
Tel: 01603 621790
Mon Sat 10-10
Imagine it's a cold winter afternoon, just starting to get dark... you've Christmas shopped yourself half to death, and want to recuperate. What could be better than sitting by the window in a cosy restaurant, watching the other poor souls trudge past as you enjoy a mug of hot chocolate and a light, crisp waffle smothered in butter and maple syrup? Not much, let me tell you! Not to be confused with the American chain eatery of the same name, the Waffle House is a small, friendly restaurant serving freshly made Belgian waffles with a variety of toppings, both sweet and savoury. With an emphasis on good quality, wholefood, ethically-produced ingredients, locally sourced where possible, this restaurant is an excellent choice for any occasion and any group of people. The atmosphere is cosy but not cramped, with lots of wood, wicker and earthenware. Live music on some nights is provided by a classical guitarist, whose gently skillful playing enhances the ambience without being intrusive. Downstairs are a number of individual tables (with the front of the restaurant being wheelchair-accessible) while groups can be accommodated in a more elegant room upstairs. The staff are friendly, attentive but not intrusive, and always willing to explain menu items or try and accommodate special dietary needs. Waffles are available in two sizes, and in a choice of plain or wholemeal, both of which are deliciously light and airy inside a crunchy shell. For those who can't tolerate wheat, dairy or eggs, or who just don't like waffles, the toppings are available alone at a reduced price; there's also a generous house salad with a choice of dressings. (If you have a nut allergy, it may be best to avoid the waffles, as some are cooked with nuts and seeds, and I don't know if they have a separate waffle maker for those.) As well as a comprehensive standard menu, there are a number of daily specials encompassing meat, fish, and at
least one vegetarian option, plus a dessert. Toppings range from the light and simple (houmous and salad), to the succulent (ham and mushrooms with cheese sauce), and across a variety of cuisines (Mexican, Spanish, Italian, Indian, and more). There's sure to be something for all tastes. Then of course there are the dessert toppings. A deliciously wicked (or wickedly delicious) chocolate mousse is one option, along with such goodies as black cherries, ice cream, banana, cream, apple and sultanas. If you like, you can also have nuts or coconut cooked into your waffle. Again, these choices are also available without the waffle, for those who pigged out on the main course. A nice, simple option is a plain waffle with butter, to which you can then add pure maple syrup, which is provided on each table in a little jug. The menu is rounded off by the drinks, a truly eclectic selection encompassing organic fruit juice, a range of fresh milkshakes, organic and regular beers and wines, and herbal teas, as well as the usual range of coffees and a rather nice hot chocolate. Prices are really reasonable - up to £4 or £5 for a main course and £3 or £4 for dessert. There's a student discount of 10% on food, and a great lunchtime offer of a main course and dessert (from specified choices) plus tea or coffee for £5. You can probably tell, but I love the Waffle House. It remains my favourite restaurant in Norwich, and I'd recommend it to anyone - locals, students, holidaymakers, day trippers. If you're in Norwich over a mealtime, you should definitely give it a try - you won't be disappointed.