56 Cliffe High Street Lewes East Sussex BN7 2AN

The Bill’s formula – convivial café tables crammed into a produce store – began right here in Lewes and has since spread to Brighton, Cambridge, Covent Garden and far beyond. The concept of food as décor is brilliantly successful; there’s nothing quite like a wall lined with tempting-looking bottles and jars of jam, chutney, elderflower cordial and olive oil to heighten the appetite. The whole enterprise started as an ordinary greengrocer’s shop and grew into a place for foodies to meet and chat over healthy, locally sourced café fare such as smoothies, salads and flans. These days, there’s more of a contemporary pub feel to the menu and far less fruit and veg for sale, but the veggie breakfast (a Bill’s speciality) is as good as ever and the café atmosphere remains. It’s still absurdly popular, especially at weekends, when local families crowd in and the place is abuzz with bustle and noise.

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