We reviewed the first branch of Social Bite, on Rose Street, shortly after it opened, in August 2012. Indeed, it topped our list of places for a takeaway lunchtime treat in this year’s Lunchquest Guide. It was with considerable glee that we spotted a new branch opening on Shandwick Place, so took the opportunity to visit, on their second day of trading.
The shop continues the green and wood décor from the first shop, but adds a nice sit-in dining area, with smart booth seats. It has a really good feel to it.
Their menu packs in their signature range of high-value, flavour-packed items. I was visiting at breakfast time, so was hooked-in by the mention of a banana, peanut butter and honey bagel. Along with a filter coffee or tea, this is available as a breakfast deal for £2.99.
I took a seat and waited while my item was prepared. The wonderfully friendly counter woman waited until the bagel was ready before making my coffee, so it was fresh and hot. It was a really nice point of detail, which impressed me.
The bagel was every bit as impressive. It was one of those gloriously messy eats, which evoked memories of childhood face stuffing. I’m currently in possession of a rather fulsome beard, which came in rather handy in catching stickily delicious morsels, as they escaped. It was a glorious way to start the day.
Social Bite’s social business model includes the option to add in “suspended” coffees and food, where you can pay upfront for an item that can subsequently be picked up by a homeless person in need. It’s a great model, now in use in a number of other places around the city, such as Union of Genius.
So overall, it was a delight to visit Social Bite, again. The business seems to be going from strength to strength, and they’ve picked a good spot for their second shop, particularly now the tram works that blighted this part of town for many years have now concluded. I’d strongly recommend a visit, as what they have on offer is tremendously good, and their business principles are entirely commendable.
Blythe scores Social Bite
4.5/5 for food
4/5 for presentation
4/5 for setting
4/5 for service
giving an overall 16.5/20
I ate: banana, peanut butter and honey bagel
I drank: coffee
I wore: matching tie and handkerchief
Total bill: £3.49