A taste of Malta as new cafe opens its doors in Wigan

A former tea shop is being given a new lease of life as a cafe serving food from Malta and around the world.

Valletta Cafe has opened on High Street in Standish, in the building once home to Mrs Lyon’s Tea Room.

At the helm is Rania Azimeh, who lives in Wigan and has run three takeaways with her Maltese husband over the years.

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Co-owner Razia Azimeh inside Valletta Cafe

She said: “It’s a Maltese cafe. We have kept all the English traditional dishes, but we have added some dishes from around the world, including Malta.

“It’s modern inside with friendly staff. We are really excited.

“We are bringing new things too, with crepes and waffles. The coffee machine is huge and we are using the best coffee. We are using the best quality. We cook and prepare the food fresh in the kitchen. We are using all fresh bread, it’s coming every morning from the bakery. There is nothing frozen, it’s all prepared fresh.”

There are hot and cold dishes on the menu, including bagels, paninis, toast and cooked breakfast, as well as afternoon teas, crepes, waffles and milkshakes.

Inside Valletta Cafe

There are special Maltese dishes such as a beef sandwich and hobz biz-zejt, while food from around the world includes falafel, tacos, grilled halloumi and middle eastern shakshuka.

The cafe is open every day and Rania is delighted with its location in Standish.

She said: “I love it. I think it’s really busy. I like the cafe itself, it’s very spacious inside. There are cafes that are very small inside.

“I have been thinking of doing this for a very long time, bringing a Maltese theme to a busy space.”

Valletta Cafe has opened in the former Mrs Lyon's tea room

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