7 Of The Best Places To Eat Near Ipswich

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It’s no real shocker that when it comes to food Ipswich is, ahem, a bit mediocre.

Like, you can’t get a foot in the local Nando’s or Toby Carvery because swarms of people are despo for a bit of chicken leg or a Yorkshire pudding, but try and find yourself a slice of avo and toast on a Saturday morning and you’re more likely to find bloomin’ Mewtwo hanging out in the town centre.

Lol.

If I discover a new sexy brunch place within a 20-mile radius of my house, I basically slip a disk with the excitement of possible Instagram opportunities and tummy happiness.

So yeah, I hope you get the gist.

With that in mind I thought I’d give you a little run down of my local fave places to satisfy my belly growls, just in case you happen to head in this direction in the foreseeable future.

Like, maybe you have family up here, or MAYBE YOU LIVE HERE, or maybe you fancy a nice trip to Aldeburgh beach for fish and chips and an ice cream.

(P.S. Some of these snaps are ahem, a bit old, so don’t judge that my wallet and my belly weren’t game with me going and re-visiting every place with a snazzy camera).

 

1. SUFFOLK FOOD HALL

This is I *think* the only place in actual Ipswich that does my kind of brunch. It’s located on the outskirts in Wherestead and is kind of like a combo of a fresh farm food shop, a cutesy homeware and gift shop and The Cookhouse Restaurant where y’know, you get to sit down and eat.

My brunch faves are the avocado on toast (because they do a sexy super size portion that comes with on the vine tomatoes and fried eggs) and the ricotta pancakes that come with maple syrup and bacon. Dreamboatin’.

They also do a heavenly lunch – the fish pie is all kinds of insane, as well as quiz nights and burger nights throughout the year which are a pretty worthwhile trip off the sofa.

Visit the website here.

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2. PUMP STREET BAKERY

This fella is based in Orford, a teeny tiny village about 45 minutes out of Ipswich and into rural Suffolk, but oh sassy baby, it is totally worth it.

We tend to save it for special occasions – we’ve made it tradition (and when I say tradition I mean we’ve done it once) to go on Christmas Eve morning to kickstart the festive feeling.

They do a divine brunch menu (weekends only) which changes seasonally – I’ve had both skillet eggs with avo and bacon (so hunky, but could have done with a second slice of bread) and hazelnut and orange curd pancakes which were an absolute mouth orgasm that I think about at least once a week.

If you don’t fancy sitting down (there’s only one long communal table in the dining room) then you absolutely have to get a takeout coffee and a cinnamon bun because they are some of the best cinnamon buns I’ve ever devoured in my life.

Visit the website here.

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3. SMOKEY JOE’S

OK so here’s the deal – Smokey Joe’s opened in Ipswich town centre earlier this year, specialising in monstrously beautiful burgers along with sides like onion rings and macaroni cheese. The real draw-in being that they delivered. IN IPSWICH. These things never happen.

So yeah, there was a couple of months where the shop was rammed and the takeaway service was taking a ridiculous amount of orders, and the people of Ipswich were just completely losing their shit over Smokey Joe’s and from what I can grasp from social media, they literally collapsed under the sheer weight of orders and success.

We had one takeaway, but have never eaten in, and the burger, although not Instagram-photo-perfect was all kinds of heaven. Especially as I could eat it from the comfort of my sofa teamed with a bottle of cider and a bit of Netflix. The macaroni cheese was meh and the chips tasted like any chips that aren’t fresh from the fryer.

Anyway, they seem to have very recently re-opened under new management, so I can’t confirm whether the food’s the same but sweet hubba, best burger in Ipswich for a mile.

Visit the website here.

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4. BREWERY TAP

This gastropub is located next to the super grim definitely-could-be-a-murder-drama-setting Ipswich docks. I have to go in there sometimes to collect parcels and it drains my soul of happiness, a bit like a Dementor.

Anyway, the pub itself plays up to being an old building that’s kind of crumbling apart, in a bit of a hipster way. Personally, I’ve always found the staff slow and lost in their own little worlds and the place is kinda lacking atmosphere, but annoyingly, the food hits the spot every damn time.

The pork belly, the roast beef, the treacle sponge, you can’t escape from the fact it’s the perfect place to mosey to on a cold Sunday afternoon for dreamy comfort food.

Visit the website here.

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5. APPLAUD

The only decent independent coffee spot in the entire town, this joint has only been open a couple of years and is run by two sisters.

I like that is feels cool, and easy to Instagram and I like that is has a garden, which makes it perfect for those kind of Saturday mornings where you want to be up bright and early and being productive.

My only qualm is that it doesn’t have an extensive breakfast menu, but maybe that’s just me being obsessed with breakfast food y’know? We normally order a couple of bacon sandwiches, whereas what I reaaaaally want are a stack of pancakes or some of my baby girl avo.

The afternoon teas are dreamy, as are the big slabs of homemade cake. Big shout out to the carrot cake, you da girl. They also host one-off evenings quite a lot – like a brush lettering class and a coffee party complete with cocktails and demonstrations, which is a pretty snazzy excuse out the house.

Visit the website here.

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6. THE UNRULY PIG

The gastropub is based just outside Woodbridge, maybe a 25 minute drive from Ipswich.

We’ve only been once, on the way home from a weekend away in the countryside, but fell in love with the Sunday lunch and so well look it’s made this list.

The beef was a medium-rare hunk of heaven, the Yorkshire puds basically the size of my face, and I very much like that kind of vibe tbh.

Unlike the Brewery Tap, it does have a soul and an atmosphere and feel busy and full of friends and family catching up on a slow Sunday afternoon, and I like that kind of feeling in the air when I’m stuffing my face with a roast and pre-ordering the entire dessert menu in my head.

It’s a smidge pricier than your classic Toby Carvery, but well worth it.

Visit the website here.

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7. HONEY + HARVEY

I was in two minds about whether to include this cafe or not. Mostly because every time I’ve been I’ve decided I’m not ever going back again, but then they do an AMAZING brunch and I’m a sucker for brunch and omg we’re on our way there again.

Why don’t I like it? Well, there’s no table service, which is fine, I get that in some places you have to go up and order. But man, they always seem SO flustered, even when there’s only like three tables of people, and they’re not warm and nice and kind and jolly about it. They seem annoyed that you’re there.

You’re also supposed to get free coffee refills, but again, only if you go up to the counter (which isn’t near the seating) and sometimes there’s a 15 minute wait at the till. Like do I want to wait 15 minutes for a free coffee to go with the second half of my breakfast? Not really.

Annoyingly the brunch menu is one of my faves of all time. Think French toast with banana and bacon and maple syrup, and mushrooms on toast and mmmmmm the dream life.

I’m not sure that they do the brunch menu during the week – but they do have pastries, cakes and sandwiches at the front to choose from which are above average. My advice? Try and go when it’s less busy.

Visit the website here.

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Obviously aside from the places above you have all your classics on the Waterfront, like Aurora and the Salthouse, which are great for a fancy meal out and a few cocktails. But hey, Trip Advisor could tell you that.

Have you been to any of these places? Have you got anywhere to recommend to me?


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