Marie needed plants and Ann needed pots so, having exhausted the garden centres near us, we decided to try Chessington Garden Centre.
It was only late morning but Ann was starving and in desperate need of food. We’d never intended to lunch out that day. But needs must and Ann headed off for the garden centre cafe, joking along the way that we wouldn’t be getting a blog post out of this lunch.
That was, until we actually found the cafe. We were shocked, we’d never expected something so splendid.
Laid out in self-serve stations, everything is beautifully displayed. Sweets were first, and looked heavenly.
Marie wanted to photograph each of them but Ann, with grumbling tummy, pulled her along.
The paninis were deliciously displayed open faced. We both ordered one.
Being not quite noon, some stations were still setting up – we learned after ordering our paninis that Thursdays are curry buffet days. This hurt Ann deeply. Curry is her favourite thing in the world and in her ravenous state her eyes nearly popped out of her head when she learned of it.
She kept looking at her sandwich and looking and towards the curry area, contemplating whether she should get both and save the sarnie for later.
But the fresh lemonade refocused her excitement (fresh lemonade!) and she decided to stick with the panini on condition we go back next Thursday for a curry (and more lemonade.)
The staff are super friendly and helpful. All of the food is prepared from scratch onsite, from the baked goods to the quiche. Ann, again, was wondering how she missed the quiche. Haste makes waste and poor lunch selections.
Cream teas are £4.45. They also do a full afternoon tea, with a special half price deal while Wimbledon is on – £15.95 for sandwiches, cream cakes and scones (all made on site.) Available from 3pm.
The seating area is huge and looks very new. The tables are nicely spaced and it’s very bright and airy. There’s also a patio.
Best of all, there’s an indoor dog seating area (at least best of all for Marie, since she’s a dog owner.)
It’s a shame we didn’t photograph our sandwiches before they were closed and toasted. Closed they don’t look like much, but they were very enticing when open. The garnish was a little old school but they tasted good. Marie had the tuna, which was, well, tuna. Ann had the tomato & mozzarella with basil and balsamic glaze.
Miraculously we escaped without getting any of the treats, which is good for our waistlines but Marie can’t stop dreaming about those meringues. No doubt her curry trip will actually be a sugar binge.
We were very pleasantly surprised by the Sedum Restaurant at Chessington Garden Centre. In fact, we were very pleased with Chessington Garden Centre all round. We have both decided to make it our go to garden centre, even though there are closer ones to our homes, and we will be sure to lunch there whenever we go.
Also open for breakfast.
Leatherhead Road, Chessington, Surrey, KT9 2NG (beside Chessington World of Adventures)
Plenty of parking
Dog friendly – inside and out