Time out: Momento Cafe
Angela Cuming gives her verdict on Waikato's cafe scene.
I was still buzzing from the cultural high of the Hamilton Fringe Festival and wasn't ready to come down, so it was time to call into the spiritual hub of our thriving arts scene: the Momento Cafe.
Near the Meteor Theatre and opposite the Waikato Museum, it's the spot where those feeling the art love tend to hang out.
It's also in paint-throwing distance of our much maligned bus shelter/winning artwork, although from that angle it looks, well, pretty much like a bus stop.
The Momento is always heaving and this weekday mid-morning was no different.
The clientele in the retro-inspired cafe consisted of an intriguing mix of thespian types, men in suits, Hamilton hipsters and bright young things with laptops trained on social-media sites.
The Irishman ordered a flat white. The chalkboard sign on the footpath promised the coffee was "exceptional", and he cheerily agreed. I ordered a pot of peppermint tea and was thrilled to find it arrived quickly, was hot and was made with real tea leaves.
The service was as the chalkboard promised, too.
It was fast and friendly and the staff actually appeared to enjoy their jobs.
The cafe is open late these days and it is great to have options other than pubs to frequent now that daylight savings has given us an excuse to leave the house after 6pm.
I have one grumble, though: whatever happened to the very cool collection of Tretchikoff prints that used to hang on the wall?