If you love cheese toasties check out this new market stall
- Credit: Archant
Wright’s Cafe has been making waves on Bury St Edmunds market and on Ipswich’s Cornhill with its gourmet toasted sandwiches packed with delicious artisan fillings.
Look away if you're on a strict diet….no really, look away because there's a chance that if you read on, you may give into temptation. Why? Because we're going to talk cheese.
And cheese doesn't really come any better than when it's all melty and gooey and slathered between two chunky pieces of bread - right?
One of my street food obsessions is cheese toast, and it's a trend we can't seem to get enough of in the UK, with vans, vintage ambulances, trucks and stalls paying homage to fromage all across our fair isles. Most recently I was blown away by The Cheese Truck on London's Maltby Street where alongside a rather large cocktail from one of the hipster bars, I sunk my teeth into a slab of carb and dairy - made with almost spicy Quicke's cheddar, creamy Oglesheild and onions. I had to look away when they brushed it over and over again with butter on the grill. There's some things a gal doesn't need to know.
Much to my delight (although I'm sure my waistline won't agree) a similar operation has sprung up in Suffolk on Bury St Edmunds Market (occasionally Ipswich Farmers' Market too).
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Former pub manager Adam Wright has moved away from the bright lights of the Big Smoke with his family in tow, and while he looks for the ideal indoor premises for his business, Wright's Café, has opened up shop on the town's market.
On Wednesdays and Saturdays the heavenly waft of cheese sizzling on the grill will take you to the al fresco (but covered) market café, where the town's 'Pied Piper' of grilled sandwiches will make your mouth water and your tummy rumble.
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"I did a tour of lots of cheese toastie businesses," says Adam of his new career - it's a hard job but someone's got to do it. "We'd spent a year up here and I was like 'what do I miss most about London' and it was going for a lovely brunch. We had an amazing bakery/coffee shop near where we lived and they did incredible sandwiches, salads and cheese toasties. Because I was working nights we'd spend a lot of days going for brunch instead of dates in the evening and those places were full. I thought 'this is what I'm missing up here'. It's that concept.
"I haven't been able to find the perfect commercial property yet but I wanted to get going as soon as possible."
And so Wright's Café came to life. And Adam clearly means business because he's gone to great lengths to ensure every product is as luxurious as possible. All the bread is organic sourdough from Stir Bakery in Cambridge. It's cut to 2cms per slice - so that's 4cm of bread before you've even got a filling!
Talking of fillings. "The Reuben is our highest seller. I home cure my ow salt beef, make my own Russian dressing and sauerkraut and make my own dill pickles and then layer that with Emmenthal. I've called it the Suffolk Reuben because all the meat I use is local."
The next best seller on the menu sounds like the ultimate hangover cure. Beef short rib, is marinated in homemade Bloody Mary mix for 24 hours and slow cooked in the Aga for eight hours until it's falling apart. It's then shredded and layered with cheese before toasting for what Adam says is the "ultimate drooling Homer Simpson moment".
"The rest of them are all vegetarian. There's one with a Middle Eastern twist where I roast various squash together with garlic and za'atar and add cheddar, smoked mozzarella and homemade red onion and whisky marmalade. That's pretty good."
And if he wasn't already going the extra mile, Adam even grows his own flipping mushrooms (not the magic variety) for a toastie made with blue cheese.
"It's 100% important to me to make everything from scratch whenever I can. It gives me a great sense of satisfaction and it's also a unique selling point. I wanted everything to have a real home-cooked feel."
If you have a vegan with you they can eat too. At every market Adam offers a salad bar of five or six unique combinations with plenty of choice for those on a plant-based diet. And you can combine them with your toastie too.
While he waits for a permanent home for Wright's Café, the foodie entrepreneur is renovating a 1940s horsebox into a food truck to take to events. He's obviously doing something right because outdoor gear giant NorthFace has already hired him to cater for its hiking weekend event over in Snowdonia.
"It's great," he says. "I'm loving this and can't wait to see where the business takes me."
Wright's Café on the market on Cornhill is open Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9am to 4pm. The cafe will be at some of the new Ipswich farmers' markets too.