ACE Café of the Month

Congratulations to all our 2017 Café of the Month winners! The overall winner, judged Best Café at the 2018 ACE Best Product Awards is Edinburgh Castle Tea Rooms, where a luxury afternoon tea experience offers top class food in a beautifully dressed space with good service and price points that demonstrate understanding of the audience and the local competition. Scroll down to see all our 2017 winners.

If you think your catering outlet has what it takes to become ACE Café of the Month then why not enter this year's competition? Each month we'll select a winner who will then qualify for the Best Café category at the 2019 ACE Best Product Awards. Simply complete the entry form below and email it, together with up to five supporting images, to

December Café of the Month
Horniman Museum Café
The Horniman Café has seen fantastic success over the past four years, growing annual net sales by 33% to over £1million. The vast majority of food is produced onsite - including the cakes, which look and taste amazing! The team try to use produce grown by the estate gardeners for specials, and all other ingredients are locally or sustainably sourced. All this together with a diverse offer for adults and children, attractive hot and cold menus, and an ambitious multi outlet programme which has increased opportunities for visitors to spend across the estate, has resulted in a clear commercial success for the team.
Horniman Museum Café

November Café of the Month
The Hepworth Café

The Hepworth Café opened in October 2017 to great acclaim. Our judges love how the team have given so much thought to the offer and presentation, choosing a catering partner whose innovation and style nuances with the Hepworth Wakefield brand. The mouthwatering menu features 'instagrammable' brunch favourites, and all products are locally sourced, including the plants and architectural prints which are all for sale. Food inspired retail ranges have also been extended into the café, and there is even a mini shop offering local ingredients so customers can recreate the dishes at home.
The Hepworth Café

October Café of the Month
Edinburgh Castle Tea Rooms

The newly refurbished Tea Rooms at Edinburgh Castle take pride of place in Crown Square at the heart of the castle. The beautiful Queen Anne room has been redesigned with opulence and comfort in mind, with a tempting cake display on full view! Afternoon tea includes Scottish smoked salmon and fresh lemon scones baked in the castle kitchens, and the Taste of Scotland platter features meats, cheeses and fish sourced from around Scotland, served with Castle-made chutney and local soda bread. Income has almost doubled in the first two months since the reopening, and the new look continues to attract more visitors seeking a luxury afternoon tea experience.
The Tea Rooms at Edinburgh Castle

September Café of the Month
The Whitworth Café

The Whitworth Café makes the most of its fabulous setting with a striking floor to ceiling glass interior, immersing guests into the surrounding Art Garden and Whitworth Park. The food's pretty special too, with fresh seasonal ingredients sourced from local suppliers and personally handpicked at the market by Director and Chef Peter Booth. The Café regularly hosts special events with unique dining experiences celebrating the Gallery's artwork, and prides itself on offering the very best service every day to ensure that guests have a fantastic experience.
The Whitworth Café

August Café of the Month
The Treaterie at Waddesdon Manor

The Treaterie opened in March 2017 and is already a firm favourite with visitors. The menu offers delicious sweet or savoury crepes, waffles, cupcakes and a colourful selection of tasty fudge flavours, all made in house by Head Pastry Chef Craig Clarke and the Treaterie team. We especially love the Great Taste award-winning ice cream from local artisan producers Oliphant and Pomeroy, who took inspiration from the Waddesdon archive to develop a Rothschild Sorbet Collection, creating a lovely link with the venue.
The Treaterie 
Pascale Cumberbatch © Waddesdon Manor

July Café of the Month
The Espresso Bar at the National Theatre

Voted one of the top 50 independent coffee shops in London by the Evening Standard, the Espresso Bar at the National Theatre is a favourite with passers-by, staff and actors alike. The baristas use Mozzo’s 100% Arabica Red Label coffee beans, and as well as homemade lemonade and San Francisco Cold Brew, you could try The N-Tea, a National Theatre themed daily special. The team told us they love the smell of freshly baked cakes and pastries from the onsite bakery, and who can blame them!
The Espresso Bar and its range of summer drinks including The N-Tea

June Café of the Month
Thackeray's Café at the Charterhouse

The newly opened Thackeray’s Café by the Charterhouse Museum sits in one of the prettiest squares in Central London. Situated in the former drawing room of a Georgian townhouse, the café's recent renovation features a beautiful contemporary finish with subtle shades of Georgian grey. All food is prepared by the in-house team who also cater for the Brothers of the Charterhouse, and even the coffee is sourced, roasted and crafted in the heart of East London.
Thackeray's at the Charterhouse