Over at Trent Bridge just by the cricket ground on Radcliffe Rd, ‘Café Olive’ and ‘Crumbs’ sit side by side, both waiting to supply the lunch crowd with it’s daily needs. It seems fitting that just as the Ashes are about to start down under that we should head over to one of the leading Test Match stages to hunt for some lunch. It might be hard to choose between the two, perhaps it comes down to habit as to which one you walk into? In my case I have always been a Crumbs man, but I welcomed the chance to try out the offerings from Café Olive.
Outside on the pavement they are both touting for business with some chalkboard action. In the past when I was working over near to Lady Bay Bridge I would walk along the riverside path with my mates to buy an all day breakfast cob or similar from Crumbs. It was usually a great big white cob filled with bacon, sausage, and mushrooms (sometimes a fried egg) with brown sauce and a bottle of lucozade to wash it down with. It was usually consumed sitting on the steps of the embankment down by the River Trent alongside Trent Bridge. That was not always the most healthy choice, but I tell you this is was certainly quite delicious and it sorted your brain and body right out.
This time out though I thought I should break with tradition so I looked over the Panini section of the menu and decided to order a “Crumbs Melt” which was a Panini filled with chicken, mushroom, cheese and sundried tomato. It was surprisingly good, and although a ‘slightly’ more restrained choice (perhaps not any healthier), it still was able to produce that almost undefinable satisfying fill that you get with a breakfast cob. Good crunchy Panini bite, juicy mushrooms, and a nice tart sweetness from those sun dried tomatoes. Not bad for £3.30
I came back again determined to step aside from Crumbs and to try out Café Olive. I was quite heartened when I saw the chalk board outside offering up Italian Meatballs. I was sure that the board said ‘pasta’ but when I got inside that wasn’t an option. I could however get a spicy Italian Meat Ball sub with cheese, in the end that sounded and tasted better than it looked. The baguette was decent and the meatballs were indeed slightly spicy in a tomato and red pepper sauce. I liked them quite a lot, they were a bit on the soft side but that was OK as you had the bite of the crusty cob to add contrast. The cheese was just not that exciting, It would have been an even better sandwich if the cheese was melted a little bit, maybe I’ll ask for that next time. Good value at just £2.80
I like both cafés, and although I would still frequent Crumbs on a more regular basis, I did see enough in Café Olive to persuade me to cross through their doors again. They are so close that you can wait until you see the menu on the day to decide.
Café Olive is at 3 Radcliffe Road, Crumbs is next door at 5 Radcliffe Road, head for the Cricket Ground and you will see them both.