One of the things I love most about running this website is introducing my wonderful audience to a hidden gem in our beautiful county. My post last week on the StarBistro was widely read and the feedback suggested that a lot of you didn’t know it was there or that it was doing such a fantastic job at providing work opportunities and experience to those with a disability in Gloucestershire.
With National Star still (only just) my Charity of the Month I wanted to take a brief moment to tell you about StarBistro at Ullenwood’s sister site at Royal Crescent, tucked away behind the bus station in Cheltenham town centre.
This branch follows the same format as the Ullenwood site but it has more of an urban feel. With free wi-fi and great coffee it’s the perfect destination for a lunch with the family or a business meeting or working brunch, lunch or afternoon tea (oh the many perks of being freelance – you must try their beetroot cakes!)
I’ve been a few times and this is now my favourite spot for meeting other Mamans looking to collaborate but last week I popped in for a solo trip. The weather was bitterly cold and Tim and his team gave me a warm welcome, a warm coffee and a delicious bowl of warming, spicy and truly delicious Chicken Laksa.
Minutes away from The Promenade and High Street this spot is perfectly located for town treats. You can access it from the back with your buggies no problems and the new Cheltenham Walk car park is just across the road behind the StarBistro (alternatively nab your three hours free parking at Waitrose and make the five minute walk to earn your lunch or cake!) High chairs are available and the menu is very definitely child friendly.
I popped in and met the kitchen staff. Just like in Ullenwood a commitment to quality ingredients and dishes is obvious and the setup at this StarBistro again is that a student from the college is supported by a member of staff to develop skills and experience which in most cases will lead them to real opportunities in the world of work and full and rewarding adult lives.
I was lucky enough to meet Alex. A really switched on young student who was an absolute pleasure to chat to. In his third term at National Star College he works in the StarBistro several days a week and complements this with study in Maths and English and has recently begun some shifts in a local hotel as an employee – an opportunity he is really proud to have been given.
On the menu is a great mix of delicious options… Breakfast and Brunch is served until 12pm Monday to Saturday and options such as Eggs Benedict, Florentine or the StarBistro Full breakfast are priced between £6 and £9. Toast and porridge are also available for those with a lighter appetite or wallet. At lunch time daily specials are available (highlights on my visit were homemade Falafels at £5.95 or the aforementioned Laksa at £8.95 and worth every penny). The core lunch menu also offers soups, salads and sandwiches on Hobbs House Bakery bread with homemade slaw (£4-£8.)
For those MumBosses amongst you take note that there is also a spacious meeting room available for hire on site. Clean, bright and welcoming and with all of the equipment you could possibly need to run your event or workshop you can hire it by the day or the hour and of course catering is available to complement your event and wow your guests.
So pop in and give it a try. The staff really are so helpful and you’ll receive a first class service and product for a really reasonable price. At the same time you’ll be offering someone like Alex an opportunity they otherwise might never experience.