A POPULAR cafe described as a ‘gem’ has achieved a third top food hygiene in a row and staff have said they are doing everything they can to 'get the door open again'.

Bean & Brew, in Wallingford, was rated five stars by South Oxfordshire District Council’s health team following a visit on March 10.

The cafe has held a top rating since February 2018. It’s lowest score was the month earlier when it was given three stars, meaning standards were found to be ‘generally satisfactory’.

However, rather than waiting for the next scheduled inspection, which happen approximately once a year, the cafe asked for a new visit and was awarded the top score.

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The business, which opened in June, 2014, has been forced to temporarily close due to the coronavirus outbreak but has said it hopes to reopen soon.

The cafe announced it would be temporarily closing on March 21, following a call by the government for all restaurant and hospitality businesses to shut to limit the spread of coronavirus.

Cafe supervisor Sarah-Jane Brown said:"Scoring five stars for our food hygiene rating at Bean & Brew is so important to all of us who work there.

"We are a positive little team of people who strive for excellence so it's great to see that effort being recognised and appreciated.

"We are proud to serve good quality food and drink to the community - who by the way, we miss terribly at the moment."

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She added owner Tammy Robertson had been 'amazing through all of this' and said: "We are currently closed until further notice but looking to the near future now, making plans to reopen, with all guidelines considered.

"Perhaps it won't be quite like before for a little while but we will do everything we can to get the door open and refreshments being served again.

"The team have all kept in touch while we are apart which is lovely and the Wallingford community have clearly been taking care of each other so that's inspiring too."

The majority of reviews for cafe on website TripAdvisor are positive, with one customer who visited the week before lockdown writing: “Such a great team in this gem of a cafe in Wallingford. Friendly, helpful staff and great coffee/tea and delicious cakes!”

Another regular commented: “My wife and I go there after shopping on Saturday mornings. They know us and we hardly need to tell them what we want. Lovely homely atmosphere and the best coffee in town, possibly in the world.”

For updates on when the St Mary's Street cafe will reopen visit the Bean & Brew's Facebook page.