Matt and Cat\'s Isle of Wight Eating Out Guide
Ryde in the summer is a buzzing town. And, particularly when the sun is out, the streets throng with holiday makers, locals and, on...

Ryde in the summer is a buzzing town. And, particularly when the sun is out, the streets throng with holiday makers, locals and, on the Saturday that Cat and friend visited Room 4, Ryde Arts Carnival was processing down Union Street.

Room 4, Ryde

Previously a shop selling giftware, jewellery and African crafts, Room 4 has evolved into a nice modern cafe. Its interior is clean and cool with its generous leather sofas, daily papers and view of the bustling street. Room 4’s menu demonstrates a variety not always seen in cafe menus; as well as standards such as sandwiches, baguettes and baked potatoes it also offers stuffed ‘butterfly’ croissants and bagels. There is a good selection of coffees and fruit juices too.

Cat’s friend decided that baked potato offered the best value for money and chose tuna as her potato’s filling. Cat focussed on the croissants, dithering between salmon and Brie. The Brie and cranberry won the toss but, on placing her order, Cat was informed that there were no croissants available nor, for that matter, chicken (her usual default food choice). However, the kind waitress allowed Cat to go off-menu and she was able to substitute the croissant for a bagel. Both Cat and her chum also had a generous glass of fresh chilled apple juice.

Flicking through the complimentary papers on their table, Cat and friend chatted away until the exciting sound of Raw Samba shook through their bones, demanding that they stop their yapping and look out of the window at the procession of drummers, garlands and paper mache heads.

Turning away from the window to enjoy the arrival of their food, Cat and pal tucked in.

Jacket potato and tuna

The jacket potato was indeed good value at £3.50; the spud was pretty big and had a generous topping of tuna with not too much mayonnaise. Both snacks came with a side salad and a smattering of tortilla crisps.

Cat’s bagel, although the same price as the potato, was a bit more meagre; Cat had hoped for ‘butterfly’ bagel, ie. two halves which would have doubled the three pieces of Brie. Nonetheless, the toasted bagel was tasty and the cranberry and Brie was an excellent combination. Cat swapped her cucumber for her friend’s tomato which bulked up her salad garnish which, with its spinach leaves and lack of raw onion was a nice departure from the norm.

Brie and cranberry bagel

Once the food had been eaten and the carnival had wound its way noisily down the street, Cat and companion stayed and chatted. Room 4 is the kind of place that does not hurry its customers out of the door. In fact, had Cat and her friend slumped into one of the leather sofas they might had been there still, so relaxing was the atmosphere.

UPDATE Sept 2010: Matt and Cat have not revisited and so have not updated this review. But Room 4 has since appeared in the news and those thinking of dining there might want to check out the story. Thanks to those commenters who drew this to our attention.

  • Nick Tester says:

    I went to this cafe today, as it made a really good impression with me in the past.
    The staff are friendly and courteous.
    Almost everything is perfect.
    The refurbishment, the ambiance, etc.

    However, I feel that charging an extra £2 for a breakfast after a certain time, and not saying as much on the menu, really shoots the establishment in the foot.
    The impression of false advertising aside…
    (I understand that misunderstandings happen, so I’m not going to accuse anyone of that.).
    …There are enough cafes in Ryde that don’t do that.
    Therefore, how can that be good for business?

    It doesn’t really make any sense to me.

    I would still recommend this establishment for a cup of Tea/ Coffee, as you’ve got that side of it down to a T.
    It’s just unfortunate that I can’t recommend anyone, to go there for a meal at the moment. :(.


  • mike boyle says:

    Come and try us again Matt and Cat and you will will be in food heaven. Our Passion, Yor Pleasure….Meow

  • mike boyle says:

    After a a50K refurbishment, Cafe Coco has blossomed into a wonderfull place to dine. I’m the owner and manager and it’s my passion. Issues in the past were growing pains, typical of many small businesses. Now with our 5 star rating and exiting new menu, new chefs, and refurbished premises we are happy to make your day. Dine with us and enjoy freshly prepared gourmet dishes. Money back promise if not delighted.
    Yours, Mike Boyle.NEBBM.BMS.MBA.FHA

  • Caution says:

    Although refurbished and re-named as ‘Cafe Coco’, this restaurant still has the same owner and manager who allowed the business to get into the state it did in 2010.
    Whilst we hope that they have learned lessons from recent incidences, I will still be keeping a wide berth because ignoring even basic hygiene is a very serious matter.

  • Mark McIntyre says:

    I have used Room 4 for over a year now and really like the place, funky sofas, great staff and it’s my cake place 🙂

    Infact i take my clients there on a regular basis and have been a bit lost recently while it’s been shut for refurb..

    Bucket sized cups of Latte and complimentory magazines and papers as well as wifi access…

    Brilliant !!!!

    Personal Trainer
    BootCamp Military Fitness Ryde and Cowes

  • No thanks says:

    The food in these pictures doesn’t look immaculate and certainly puts me off

  • Looby says:

    told you so food hygiene standards NOT ACCEPTABLE

  • b ward says:

    just read county press, never eaten here myself, but have to say in passing it always looked
    Also notice it appears to be up for sale ? so could be someone just took their eye of the ball
    as it were for a while.
    Would not put me off eating here personally. I imagine they will be more than thorough from now

  • No thanks says:


    ROTTING food has been removed from a Ryde cafe by environmental health officers.
    Isle of Wight Council environmental health officers used a public protection law for the first time in six years to remove the food from Room 4 in Union Street.

  • Patrick says:

    They advertise throughout the year both at the Cafe and in island publications that they are open as a pizzeria until late. It never seems to be open after about 6pm. If they are only open in the evening for a few weeks in the summer why not say so. Have yet to find out if the food is any good.

  • D says:

    My wife and I used Room 4 regularly in the early weeks of my daughters arrival on the planet (she is just over a year old now) and always found the food and staff at Room 4 to be very good. The hot wraps are indeed very tasty and it is an ideal place to hide away in the corner with your buggy and enjoy a light bite. The menu is comprehensive for a caff, the food is better than the norm and it is reasonably priced. Best caff in Ryde.

  • Looby says:

    Sorry to say not happy went for lunch with friend food OK’ish(soup was cold, way to thick and more or less tasteless). My friends savoury wrap seemed the better option. However the thing that really put me off was that the toilet was filthy and the female assistant serving the food had her long hair trailing loose and all over the place…which I don’t believe to be acceptable from a food hygiene perspective.

  • Mike says:

    Braved the snow to slide down Union Street to Room 4. The cafe is bright and comfy.I tried the full English.I have to say I wasn’t overly impressed..It wasn’t all that warm and the tea was luke warm. The staff were great though and friendly,Will return.

  • Mat says:

    I always find myself in here. Great for coffee and a light snack. Not always so great for a meal but the staff are lovely. Good music, Nice sofas, very chilled out.

  • Rob says:

    Great for breakfaxt.
    Read the daily papers
    Watch the Ryde people walk by
    Drink really good coffee.
    Friendly staff.


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