REVIEW: Barista, High Street West, Sunderland

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A SHOP has gone from cheap boots to tasty buns in the blink of an eye.

Barista, in High Street West, has transformed itself into a simple eatery without a crumb of evidence of the shoe shop which used to inhabit the building.

From the outside the café isn’t much to behold, and inside it may have benefitted from a little more attention to detail, as the windows look a little shabby.

However, the owners have come up with a basic list of drinks and snacks which are proving to be a winning combination.

During a lunch time visit I was surprised to see a fridge plentifully stocked with an appetising range of sandwiches and cold 

A board also advertised jacket potatoes, cooked in a potato oven on the counter, which also houses a tempting array of baked goods and sweet treats.

I opted for a jacket potato with cheese and beans (£3.95) and also a pot of Yorkshire tea, from the extensive tea menu (£1.25).

Typhoo, PG Tips and a number of herbal teas are also available, as well as a list of coffees.

My mam picked a ham salad sandwich (£2.95) Quavers (70p) and an orange J2O (£1.50).

There was a queue at the counter to order – it was difficult to find an empty seat – but the service was quick. And it didn’t take long for my potato to be prepared and served.

Everything was fresh, and made all the better by the inexpensive pricing.

We even stayed a little longer to sample one of the delicious looking cakes on display.

A big slice of moist, creamy carrot cake costs £2.25.

Barista isn’t the flashiest café in the city centre.

But it’ll be hard to find anywhere as cheap, cheerful and that makes ordering so delightfully simple.