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Plant-based: Inside Cambridge's new vegan cafe

Cambridge has welcomed another plant-based cafe/bistro: called Thrive, every element of the enterprise, from the menu to fixtures and fittings, has been created with sustainability uppermost in mind.

Described as “a beautiful and friendly space for people to connect over delicious, sustainable plant-based meals, coffee and cakes” by co-founder Jeremy Peters, Thrive is housed in what was formerly CB2 on the corner of Norfolk Street.

The property’s eco-friendly refit includes a bar built from live-edged wood by a local carpenter and suppliers are kept as local as possible, both to support the immediate economy and minimise food miles - take the coffee, billed as “a rich chocolate/caramel body with notes of hazelnut and apricot”, roasted at Hot Numbers’ HQ in Shepreth.

Even the window boxes support a good cause: they’re filled by the team at Darwin Nurseries, the NHS-run learning disability centre with farm shop, garden centre and florist on Newmarket Road.

Stalled by lockdown and subsequently thrown a financial lifeline by Sook, which owns the building and stepped in to help with the rent, Thrive is a long-held dream made reality, says Jeremy, adding: “We are so, so excited to be finally able to serve people and we’ve been overwhelmed with help, support and patient anticipation!”

Along with the Hot Numbers coffee, Equinox Kombucha, and a wide range of cakes and pastries - homemade jaffa cakes, white chocolate marbled flapjacks, gluten-free brownies, fruit croissants - Thrive has an ever-expanding menu of savoury mains and sides, such as the signature onion bhaji fries.

Thrive is at 5-7 Norfolk Street, Cambridge CB1 2LD. See thrivecambridge.com and follow @thrivecambridge

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