I’ve been hearing so many great things about Exeter’s Exploding Bakery from all my foodie friends in-the-know that I knew I’d have to pay it a visit sooner or later. So when an old college friend was keen to catch up over coffee, I jumped at the chance to sample some of the trendy bakery’s delicious coffee and cakes…
The Exploding Bakery is the bastard love child of Tom Oxford and Oliver Coysh – two friends who have been passionate about baking since their school days. Together, they have built up a tremendously popular bakery that is often packed to the bring with local foodies and visitors alike. It’s popularity is partially due to it’s prime location by Exeter’s Central Station, but mostly thanks to it’s fabulous reputation for baking fresh tasty pastries and breads.
The Exploding Bakery contains a few large tables for communal seating, as well as a couple more snug two person tables to enjoy your coffee. Communal seating seems to be really trendy in interior design right now and while it’s something that I used to find uncomfortable, I’m starting to really enjoy it because it encourages visitors to interact with one another.
By the time Ellen arrived, I was more than ready to sample some of the treats on offer. Following her recommendation, I opted for the lemon and pistachio polenta cake and a house flat white. The coffee – I was surprised to learn – comes in a range of different varieties. The House coffee comes courtesy of Monmouth Coffee – which happened to be what I opted for – but they also guest many coffees, such as Clifton Coffee, Campbell & Syme, Assembly, La Cabra and The Barn.
Unsurprisingly, my coffee was great – super smooth and not too bitter. But of course, it was the cake that was really good. The polenta cake was soft and crumbly, with a zingy hit of lemon. Sometimes these sorts of cake can be a little dry, but I’m pleased to report that my slice was wonderfully moist!
I think we spent about 2 and a half hours in The Exploding Bakery all told.. (to be fair, we had to set the world to rights!). During this time, we managed to get through another two coffees and a sausage roll – which went very well with their homemade yellow plum ketchup. This whole time, the staff were incredibly friendly and more than happy to talk us through their menu.
If you appreciate independent businesses you should definitely grab a coffee and cake at The Exploding Bakery. Even if you don’t have the time to sit down, you can always grab a takeaway cup. The service is friendly and the cakes don’t get much fresher than this!