Muddy eats: Eat ‘n’ Mess, Sevenoaks

eat cakes

I must admit I felt a smidge conflicted when new cake and coffee shop Eat ‘n’ Mess opened its doors just six months ago in Sevenoaks. A boutique little cakery selling the most scrummy-looking handmade offerings? Too exciting. But all the baked goodies being free of either gluten, dairy or refined sugar? Will it taste just as good? Cue, worried hand wringing…

Well of course the only way to find out was by trying as many cakes as possible, so yes, *loosens belt buckle a notch* I took a hit for the team. And here’s what I discovered…

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Opening in a prime position on London Road, opposite Blighs car park, Eat ‘n’ Mess is the brain child of owner Danielle Rumbelow, who shifted from selling at chilly farmers markets to her very first retail shop. I met Muddy Stilettos Kent’s brilliant new Intern, Charlotte, for a power brunch (ahem, cake binge) at 10.30am on a weekday and before long all the seats were taken and there was a real buzz around the place.

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Danielle, who is well-informed and passionate about her business challenged us to a taste test. Could we try her Gluten, Dairy and Refined Sugar Free Fluffy Pancakes (the maple syrup is made with natural sugars) look her in the eye and tell her they didn’t taste as good as the real thing? Well, being ever such an obliging sort, I took her up on her offer. And, while the sweet-toothed cynic in me was really not expecting it, *raises eyebrows and shakes head in disbelief *, let me tell you, they tasted gooood. So did the chocolate chip brownie and cream-filled oaty biscuit we sampled, all in the name of science you understand. Nothing had a hint of compromise or replacement flavour about it – these are quality, mouth wateringly wonderful creations.

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On the serious side of course the opening of a place like this is life changing for people with serious sensitivites or allergies – so I wasn’t too surprised when Danielle told me that customers travel to her shop from the other side of Kent. I chatted to one mum who was a coeliac, and so were her two young children, and the three of them were tucking into a plate full of pancakes with obvious delight. Danielle can also do bespoke cakes of just about any shape or size and for any occasion. But gluten or dairy intolerant or not, this is just a great little cake shop, prettily designed, in a building with character from the tiled entrance to the bay windows. It’s the perfect meeting place for a casual, but classy cuppa – they also serve artisan coffee and tea – for anyone. Just approach with an open mind and empty stomach!

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Eat ‘n’ Mess, 67 London Rd, Sevenoaks, TN13 1AU, Tel: 01732 461 839, eatnmesscakes.co.uk

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside - Kent