“Where did that pop up from?” and “didn’t that used to be an old council building”? Those were my exact thoughts driving by the corner of Church Hill in March 2017. I could see that work was was being undertaken for a new dessert place called Creams Cafe.
The Central area of Walthamstow has had a massive facelift over the last few years. A cinema and numerous places to eat and drink have really given the whole high street and the Hoe Street area a huge buzz. What HAS been missing though is a flagship dessert place.
I’d driven pass Church Hill a number of times and noticed the “Opening Soon” signs of a Creams Cafe in Walthamstow. “Nice”, I thought.
Anyway, I took my first trip there with my wife and thought I’d report back by writing a review of our experience.
Time and Date Visited
It was a Saturday night, only a few weeks after the opening and we turned up just before 10.30pm. What we didn’t realise was that the place closed at 11:00pm.
Waiting Time in Queue
As we approached the entrance (which is also the exit), we could see people queuing outside of the door and out onto the street. This I thought was NOT good and inside my head I was wondering whether or not we would actually get a chance to be served, let alone get our ice creams.
I was already conjuring up Plan B which was an uneventful drive to Leytonstone McDonalds for a Crunchie McFlurry.
On the flipside, a busy place is also a good sign which tells me that whats inside must be worth waiting for.
I was quite surprised that the queue DID move and since there were only two of us, we managed to get a seat pretty quickly…not bad!
Just on a side note, I also went again the following week in a group of 6 people around the same time and we still managed to get seats when it was extremely busy so credit where its due.
Very important Tip: When in the queue, do let the staff know whether you want to be seated or if you are ordering takeaway. The first time we went, I was unaware of this and people behind me were being seated.
When you are queuing, staff should be handing out menus so you can order by the time you get to the till. If there isn’t any staff, there is a small table type of thing where all the menus are placed on the left as you walk in, just pick one up from there and you’re good to go.
It also important to note that Creams don’t allow you to order at your table, you have to queue, make your order, pay and then go to your seat. Think of Nandos and you get the idea.
The menu isn’t overly huge, however it caters for a range of different styles of tastebuds. These include a selection of Ice Cream Sundaes, Milkshakes, Crepes and Waffles to name a few. I forgot to snap a picture of the menu but feel free to check out the full menu here on the official website.
In terms of cost, I would say that prices are relatively similar to local competitors. The chocolate fudge mess was £6.95 and the strawberry Sundae was £6.50. The Mango Manila milkshake was £3.50. The portions are a decent size so you might even want to share if you aren’t much of an ice cream connoisseur or have a sweet tooth.
Customer Service of Till Staff
Overall the customer service of Creams was very good.
The till staff were very polite and friendly.
What I found really good was the rapport the staff had with one another. They were constantly laughing and joking with each other but working equally as hard. It felt as though they were all friends who were passionate about what they did.
Definitely brownie points there.
Wait Time of Food to Arrive
Ok so as the receipt picture indicates, our order was made at 22:30. The first picture I took was of the strawberry sundae at 22:40. That’s 10 minutes, not bad at all considering how busy it was. I’d expect it to be a bit quicker at a less busier time.
Quality and Taste of Food
I went for a Strawberry Sundae and my wife had a Chocolate Fudge Mess Waffle as well as a Mango Mania Milkshake.
Strawberry Sundae – £6.50
Good Points – Nice fruity taste. The strawberry ice cream had an authentic taste to it.
The strawberry sauce had a bit of a tangy taste to it.
All in all, a very well balanced ice cream and certainly for those like me who prefer ‘fruiter’ taste.
Presentation was very nice and ideal for social media pictures.
Room for improvement – The vanilla Ice Cream did not taste very authentic, almost like something you get from your local Ice Cream Van.
Bad Points – None that really stood out.
Chocolate Fudge Mess Waffle – £6.95 + Extra Scoop of Ice Cream £1.50
Good Points – The toffee sauce was very nice. Very sweet and as you would imagine it to be. The crumbled hot chocolate fudge cake delivered as expected.
Presentation was nice.
Room for improvement – As mentioned above, the vanilla ice cream needed a more genuine taste but it wasn’t actually too bad. We requested an additional scoop of Ice Cream, but the scoop was quite small. We wanted Vanilla but they were out of stock so went for Strawberry instead. This didn’t have any impact on our experience or the taste.
Bad Points – The waffle was not very good. Quite thick, “doughy” and on the heavy side, but this is down to personal taste, it just wasn’t to ours. There are other local places who provide much nicer waffles.
If the waffle was much lighter, it would have been an amazing dessert.
Mango Mania Milkshake – £3.50
Good Points – My wife’s reaction was “this is lovely”. It wasn’t too sweet and tasted very authentic.
Room for Improvement – A touch more of mango flavour would have probably been better.
Bad Points – None that we could think of.
Decor and Ambience
Creams is a franchise of Creams Cafe. With stores up and down the country you would expect the store to look similar to the rest of the branches. I haven’t been to another branch so this isn’t something I can comment on too much. However, in terms of general decor, the shop was very nicely fitted out, vibrant colours and aesthetically pleasing to the eye.
There was music playing in the background but for the life of me I had absolutely no idea what it was. Some ‘charty type’ stuff…..possibly.
Customer Service of Waitering Staff
I did the “water test” where I asked for some tap water from one of the staff.
In all honesty I didn’t expect him to be back for a while considering how busy they were. I was pleasantly surprised when the gentleman came back minutes later with two glasses of Thames Water’s finest. Thumbs up.
With so many positive points in this review, parking is a major let down. Resident permits are active 7 days a week until 9:30pm every day.
The closest places to park are “The Mall” shopping centre car park or local roads after 21:30.
This unfortunately is more of a local council issue rather than a Creams issue.
The location of Creams could not be any better. The shop is literally in the heart of Walthamstow town centre and is a walk away from the High street, “The Mall” shopping centre and pretty much all modes of transport are within walking distance.
It’s on a very busy junction which links Church Hill, Hoe Street and Walthamstow High Street together.
Prior to seeing the place for myself, I read several negative reviews, however, in all honesty, we didn’t experience any of those. Naturally, a place that has recently opened will no doubt have a few teething problems, however, we didn’t really face any.
Walthamstow has needed a place like this for a long time and although there are some local dessert places, nothing quite packs a punch like a nice gelato in the heart of “The Stow”, well played Creams, well played. I shall certainly be back with the rest of the family.
Would I recommend Creams Cafe Walthamstow? I wouldn’t hesitate to say yes.
What were your experiences of Creams Cafe in Walthamstow? Is there anything on the menu you liked or disliked? Please leave your feedback comments below as we would love to hear from you.
4 Church HIll
0208 520 3048
Please double check these timings with the official website or call the branch to be sure.
Monday 11:00 – 23:00
Tuesday 11:00 – 23:00
Wednesday 11:00 – 23:00
Thursday 11:00 – 23:00
Friday 11:00 – 23:00
Saturday 11:00 – 23:00
Sunday 11:00 – 23:00