We try out the raved-about Willerby music cafe

Continental Meat Plate from Solos Music Cafe
-Credit: (Image: Hull Live)


For 10 years, a cafe in Willerby has been serving up more than just a bite to eat.

Solos Music Cafe on Kingston Road has had rave reviews as it builds itself as one of the best places to go eat. Owned by Frank and Fran, the pair champion its local music scene - mixing up meals for the stomach and ears with constant live music performances.

Hull Live went to the famed cafe to see what it was like first-hand.

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On an average Wednesday, the place was very busy - but thankfully a spare seat saved me the awkwardness of being turned away. Although the live music shows are usually reserved for Saturdays, some of the kit was out to see - a microphone stand and sound deck - as well as a decorated guitar on the wall.

Co-owner Franks's background is mainly in the Fire & Rescue Services, in which he spent 33 years. But the music background comes from his decade promoting weekly music and managing sound at the Blue Bell Inn in Cottingham - where he oversaw more than 300 performances and 10 music festivals. It's safe to say live performances are in safe hands.

Although I missed out on the breakfast menu, which stopped serving at 11.30am, one thing immediately caught my eye. Though the sandwiches get all the applause, a Continental Meat Plate for £7.50 was going to take some turning down. Whereas Frank has a musical background, Fran has the culinary experience - with 23 years in hospitality under her belt.

Solos Music Cafe is voted the number one restaurant in Hull on TripAdvisor
Solos Music Cafe -Credit:Solos Music Cafe

In no time it was ready and in front of me. My cheerful waitress could see I looked impressed, as she said "Looks good, doesn't it?" with a chipper smile. Though the place was busy, I'd like to give a shout-out to the staff juggling the full floor singlehandedly and the sole food prepper in the back working nonstop to keep up with the orders coming in.

Being quite a warm day, I felt that I chose the right option going for a "picky bits" dinner. The selections of Italian and Spanish meats, coleslaw, salad, olives, sundried tomato, green grapes, red onion chutney, crisps, bread and butter did just that.

The meats on top of the buttered bread were something that you'd expect in the Mediterranean more than in Willerby. Coleslaw has been a grower on me in recent times, but this was some of the nicest I've had since my slaw re-awakening. Something I never thought I'd enjoy doing is just eating pickled onions straight, but I was popping them like goodies; just thankful I always have some chewing gum with me.

Something that I haven't caught the bug for yet is chutney. Though I gave it a go, it just was not for me, unfortunately. Halfway through I was tempted by a scone looking at me through the counter; but the fact my plate had crisps and grapes meant it came with its own desert. The bunch of grapes were a sweet way to end my picky bit bite to eat.

Although there wasn't any live music on while I was there; a Northern Soul playlist offered some lovely background noise while I tucked in. I'd really like to come back when there is a musician playing - the cafe regularly posts live music acts that will be playing on their Facebook page.

Solos Music Cafe can be found at 141 Kingston Road, Willerby. The cafe is open Tuesday to Saturday 9 am - 4 pm.