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Coffee Shop Review – Ottino’s in the Shambles

Published on: 19 Nov, 2013
Updated on: 16 Dec, 2013
Two coffees and very large iced buns

Two coffees and very large iced buns

by Maria Rayner

Sitting in the “idyllic haven”[their words] that is Ottino’s, I shivered. In fact, during our visit, the female contingent of the party kept its coats on. Our editor had cycled to our rendezvous so was warm [I also have more natural insulation. Ed].

We visited the cafe early, around 9am, when deliveries caused the door to be open. However, Ottino’s is unusual for a cafe in central Guildford in that it has pavement space. And pavement heaters to ensure smoking patrons are kept warm. Sadly, the open door meant that not only were indoor non-smokers chilly, there was second-hand smoke too.

Ottino’s is an independent cafe selling basic cakes and made-to-order sandwiches and paninis. Americano coffees are £1.80 – £2 each, depending on size. We took advantage of the coffee and cake deal at £2.95 each. The Belgian buns we selected were very large but a little dry.

There’s a young vibe at this cafe: 20% discount is offered to students, loud pop music plays and the decor is homely with pictures and witty posters. In addition to the usual hot and soft drinks, as licensed premises, beer and wine is also sold. There are newspapers and free wi-fi.

Access is ok, with the option of sitting outside with heaters and awnings, or negotiating the small step up to jostle for a position at one of the cramped two-seater tables. There is an upstairs but this was blocked off when we visited.

I’ve had better visits here than this, albeit sunny days sitting outside, and perhaps this is the best time to visit Ottino’s. When the Ed’s coffee got cold, the service was fantastic. They didn’t merely warm it: they gave him a fresh one and they did not know we were reviewing.

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Responses to Coffee Shop Review – Ottino’s in the Shambles

  1. Sally Hole Reply

    December 16, 2013 at 8:38 am

    Hi, I’m the owner of Ottino’s at the Shambles.

    Thanks for doing the review, there’s a lot that we can take away and improve based on your comments, as we have only been open for a year, so we are keen to make a good impression.

    We do try to ask customers if they would prefer to have the door closed and I’m not sure why the upstairs was blocked off but I will ask the staff about this, as I don’t think I was at the cafe when you visited.

    I also just wanted to clarify that the Belgian buns are actually part of a coffee and bun deal at £2.95 for the coffee and a bun, and not just the bun on its own, so two coffees and two buns for £5.90 [Article corrected. Apologies for our error. Ed]

    We will work on the negatives and, hopefully, if you return you will have a more positive experience.

  2. Jonathan Bird Reply

    December 18, 2013 at 7:43 am

    I love this coffee shop, it’s cute, quirky and fun!

    The food is amazing and it’s reasonably priced compared to most of Guildford. A great little escape when you need somewhere for lunch. The perfect place to beat the Christmas madness!

    Give this underdog a try. They’ll show you that the usual coffee chains don’t stand up against them.

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