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Cafe owner aims to serve up the perfect Suffolk Sundae

Taking the leap and starting your own business can be scary at the best of times

But when a global pandemic interrupts your plans, you might even be tempted to think twice.

That wasn’t the case for Ben Toth however, who when planning his new cafe in Thurston, took the opportunity of four months in lockdown to refine his plans even further.

Renais Fagher, Ben Toth and Doni Seku at the new cafe. Picture Mecha Morton
Renais Fagher, Ben Toth and Doni Seku at the new cafe. Picture Mecha Morton

He had originally hoped to open earlier this year.

“It has been tough for all businesses but I took lockdown as an opportunity to refine what we offer, and think positively” said Ben.

“In some ways we benefited from the time between March and mid-July. We worked on the menu, the music and got the vibe just right. Music is important to us and we like the a create a relaxed ambience with jazz, funk and soul.”

Ben has now been running Rossá Coffee and Crepes at Thurston Granary, on Station Hill, for the last six weeks.

The coffee shop offers a wide range of coffee and tea, as well as crepes, waffles, shakes, smoothies and sundaes.

“People can now try anything from an espresso or chai latte tea to a naughty Nutella waffle, a white chocolate symphony crepe or a Suffolk Sundae, which contains vanilla and strawberry ice cream, all locally sourced.

“We have already built up a band of regulars of all ages, and the feedback to both to the idea of a cafe has been great, as to the cafe itself.

“I chose Thurston after driving around looking for the best spot for a cafe and just thought; this is it. I live just outside Ipswich at the moment and am hoping to move nearby soon.”

Ben employs a team of six part-time staff and has Covid-19 safety measures in place.

“Everyone has been super-supportive,” said Ben.

“It’s been a difficult time for everyone but I think if you believe in yourself and your business, you can get through.

“Thurston is a lovely place and so are the people, who couldn’t have been more welcoming.”

Rossá Coffee and Crepes is open seven days a week. Ben already has plans for another two or a three cafes, in a similar vein.

“I would like to branch out from the original cafe with more. That really would be great,” he said.