On my way to review the latest Greggs – less than ten minutes from my office – I passed by not one but two other Greggs stores.
The bakery giant is a dominant presence in most city centers – and there are two more opening in Brum later this year – but this week we welcomed something that now makes us the envy of Gregg fans everywhere – the biggest store in the world!
And not only that – the world’s largest Greggs housed in the world’s largest Primark.
Read more:Greggs is to open two new stores in the city center – hot on the heels of Primark’s massive launch.
Tasty by Greggs cafe opened in Primark town center on Saturday 12th February.
It is, of course, a match made in heaven. The Greggs and Primark collaboration also includes an exclusive fashion collection, available for customers to buy later this month from Primark stores across the UK.
Two powerful economical brands forming the ultimate power couple!
Although I’m not an ardent Primark shopper, I have a secret passion for Greggs savory pastries, so I went to review the new Greggs on Valentine’s Day to see if this place was worth a second date. you.
The new 130-seat Greggs Cafe is located on Primark’s mezzanine level overlooking the menswear department.
Going down the escalators, you can’t miss it. There’s large, bright pink signage – not in the usual Greggs blue color branding – but something more befitting of a beauty salon.
Inside, it certainly looks very pleasing to the eye – spacious, bright decor – and plenty of comfortable seating.
The best seat in the cafe is a donut swing in the back.
But before entering the cafe I was mesmerized by another sign – advertising Greggs new evening menu!
From 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., Tasty by Greggs offers a separate evening dinner menu, including pie and mash!
If there’s anything I love more than chicken pastries, it’s chicken pot pie, so to get stuck into this amazing new evening meal from Greggs, I headed straight for the back of the waiting line.
Yes, this Greggs might be the biggest, but it’s no different than its others a few doors down when it comes to long queues – unless you have the Gregg click and collect app – which I don’t have. (I’m not madly in love.)
The evening menu consists of a pie with mash and beans as well as a six-slice pizza box and jacket potatoes.
I arrived at the cafe just before 4pm, but a Greggs employee was already piling the pies on the warm counter shelves.
Sadly, no sign of beans or mash, but at least I could test the pie.
You have a choice of steak and chicken, and I opted for the chicken pot pie (£2.25).
This cafe has a varied menu of customer favourites, including our classic sausage rolls, pastries, pizzas, sweets, a range of freshly brewed coffee and hot take-out food – so basically what you’ll find in n’ any Greggs.
I know what their pastries and sausage rolls taste like – and since I couldn’t write a full review based on a chicken pot pie – I decided to test a range of menu items that I had never tried previously. A friend had also phoned to say she would be joining me, so I opted for various items to taste.
Since it was a miserable and freezing rainy day, I opted to seek refuge for the sweet tooth at the hot counter. It wasn’t the day for a salad or a sandwich.
I picked up chicken goujons (£2.95) wedges and a meal box of BBQ bites (£2.60)
I also had a hot chicken and stuffing baguette (£3.30) and at the counter went for a corned beef ‘cook’ (£1.55) which I thought was a patty Cornwall.
I’ve never tried the pizza at Greggs so I opted for a slice of pepperoni as well. (£1.65) and – another first for me – I also bought some Greggs sweets.
As there seemed to be a donut theme at the new Greggs – I thought it would be rude not to try one – and opted for the caramel custard donut plus a slice of custard .
All washed down with a diet coke, my little health gesture!
The cafe’s interior may be colorful, but Greggs’ food is mostly a celebration of beige.
I sat down and cooked my Greggs feast. It looked like a very boring beige sideboard.
It was a shame there was a wait for my slice of pepperoni as it meant my food was devoid of any color – other than the brown sauce that oozed from my chopstick.
The hot chicken and stuffed baguette contained none of the veggies, greens or cranberry sauce that makes roast sandwiches so delicious in stores at Christmas.
I know I could have opted for a salad, but that’s not why anyone goes to Greggs, is it?
And anyway, who cares as long as it tastes good. Well the baguette didn’t – the bread was good but the filling was way too bland with a flavorless sauce.
The crispy chicken bites and the spicy gudgeon were much better. The corners were good too.
The corned beef batter – made with a thicker batter than the usual Greggs pastries had a bit of color thanks to the peas and carrots so it looked like the healthiest thing on the table.
It was lukewarm, but it was quite tasty when I bit into it, so I sure would have appreciated it if it had been hotter.
The “creamy chicken” pie was way too creamy for me. I was surprised by this as I love Greggs Chicken Bake which is also very creamy, but this recipe filling is not substantial enough to make a good pie.
As with all Greggs dishes, I couldn’t fault the pastry.
When I finally got my pepperoni pizza, it wasn’t worth the wait. The base was thick and pasty and just tasted rubbery as you would expect from a dodgy store.
I will not be buying Greggs pizza again and certainly not a box of six slices for my evening meal.
Finally, the custard slice and the beignet were both delicious. I can’t believe this was my first time ordering a Greggs candy!
Unfortunately, my friend stood me up. On Valentine’s Day! So I put the rest of the beautiful Greggs items that I hadn’t been able to finish myself in my bag for the next day.
Random and confusing.
It may be a new restaurant, but considering it’s the biggest Greggs in the world; I would have thought the company would have thrown everything away to fix all the startup issues before its big whirlwind opening.
If it wants to sell itself as a proper new cafe experience – Greggs should have nailed the service aspect with more staff – prioritizing that over investing in an Instagram-friendly interior.
The servers were very charming and helpful. They were just too busy to keep up with the influx of customers – and seemed oddly taken aback by it all – as if they weren’t working in the biggest Greggs in the new world!
A few of my orders were taken wrongly, and I felt like I had to get up at the counter to check my pizza and ask for the correct sauce packets.
There was a counter near the entrance to the cafe with a condiment board above it, but when I went there were only sugar packets and napkins.
£16 for chicken goujons, barbecue wedges and bites, chicken pot pie, chicken and stuffing baguette, pizza slice and custard slice and donut, and diet coke.
Service issues aside, stressed and hungry shoppers who need a break from the world’s largest Primark will find Tasty by Greggs a welcoming sanctuary.
My visit to Tasty by Greggs was enjoyable in that it introduced me to the delights of Greggs sweet offerings, so if I’m out shopping and need coffee and cake, instead of the M coffee & S, I could come here.
But Greggs savory pastries will always be my #1 love.
Steak, chicken, cheese and onion, sausage, beans and melted cheese – all hold a special place in my heart as my guilty pleasures – and I don’t want or need to sit in a pink cafe to enjoy.
I’ll stick to eating them on the go from whichever Greggs numbers come closest to me when I’m craving that dose of comfort food. And you know there’s never one too far.
Customers can place Click + Collect orders through the Greggs app to avoid queues.
Tasty by Greggs opening hours: Monday – Saturday: 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. Sunday: 10:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Stay up to date with the latest news with our daily email updates.