Cafe stops – not everyones cup of tea?

I got out for my monthly Hervelo club ride today. A fantastic 40 miles with a cafe stop on a beautiful crisp sunny day.

The route was an out and back, planned around a cafe which does great bacon rolls. We even left a bit earlier than normal to make sure we didn’t miss the cut off for breakfast rolls.

Every road cyclist knows, it’s all about the cafe stop.

We’ve used this particular cafe a few times. I’ve got to say, today the welcome was a little lacking.

I can appreciate that having cyclists dropping in at your cafe might not be every owner’s cup of tea. So here’s my reasons for and against welcoming cyclists at your cafe…

Love the Cyclists:

  • Cyclists are hungry people. They can spend quite a bit.
  • If they are mid-ride, cyclists tend not to stop for too long.
  • Cyclists are (often) normal people too. They (often) have families and lives away from bikes (to some degree at least). If they discover a great cafe on the bike, they may well return with their family.
  • Like bees, cyclists leave a good cafe and return to the cycling hive to tell all their friends about the fantastic cake. The next thing you know, you are dealing with a swarm of cyclists.
  • Cyclists are very loyal. Once they discover a good cafe they will keep coming back.
  • Some cyclists will head out on their bikes year round and whatever the weather. When nobody else is venturing out, the cyclists will still be there.

Loathe the Cyclists:

  • Lycra – road cyclists can look just a bit odd for the ‘normal’ cafe clientele. Added to that they often waddle about like penguins on noisy cleats.
  • Sweatiness – road cyclists can smell just a bit odd for the ‘normal’ cafe clientele.
  • If they are finishing a ride, cyclists can stay for quite a while.
  • Cyclists will litter the area surrounding their table with helmets, sunglasses, gloves, and the extensive contents of their back pockets.
  • There will be a tangle of bikes everywhere outside.
  • Everyone will pay separately. Many will not remember what they just had.
  • Like bees, cyclists leave a good cafe and return to the cycling hive to tell all their friends about the fantastic cake. The next thing you know, you are dealing with a swarm of cyclists.

Having cycled in Majorca regularly before children, I can’t help but think that cyclists are a bonus to cafes.

But then, I would think that. I like bacon rolls.

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