By Viktor Berg
Wilton’s dog café Monty and Mabel’s reopened on May 18 and is a safe space for dogs to have a treat and run around, and people can come too.
“We are a people-friendly dog café and we want to be one of the beats of Wilton’s heart,” new owner Sam James said.
Some might call it destiny as Sam and husband Michael Lattimore moved to Wilton a year ago and on their first night, they brought their Hungarian Pulis to Monty and Mabel’s where they met many new friends; a night that formed their life in Wilton.
Visiting dogs can relax on dog beds and indulge in dog cuisine; pup cakes, dog ice cream, Pawsecco as well as dog beer, and their owners can browse merchandise.
One dog already celebrated its birthday at the café and Salisbury Sausage Dogs Club brought their best friends in for a party as well.
The couple aim to create a lounge-feel to Monty and Mabel’s and so far, feedback has been positive.
“That’s what people have said, that it’s nice and relaxed where they can feel comfortable. People stay for long hours and we want them to know they are more than welcome to do so,” Sam said.
“We are overwhelmed with how lovely everyone has been.”
Michael added they are “super keen” to be a part of the community and Wilton’s business network.
“We have made some of the strongest friends in our lives here. That first night was so integral, it’s about giving back,” he said.
Michael still works in London full-time, so Sam is the one to take the reins.
“Michael is an extremely helpful sidekick,” Sam joked.
To add to, and not necessarily compete with other establishments in Wilton, all dishes are either vegetarian or vegan, including gluten free options, and they only serve food they can cook themselves in the café.
Two-legged visitors won’t find classic Andalusian gazpacho, a cold vegetable soup, or with a variant of the egg and tomato dish Shakshuka anywhere else nearby but they have kept the bagels as per customer request.
“We want to offer something different people may not have tried before, and they are all things we would cook at home,” Sam said.
As a café centred around dogs and with the direction they are taking, they hope to pull people from Salisbury and other areas as well to benefit the town overall.
On Fridays and Saturdays, the café is licensed to 11pm and plans include workshops, wine and cheese evenings and gin nights.
The coffee served is roasted in Winchester, and the beans come from Rwanda.
The café is part of charity Encircles’ scheme and gives free coffee to the homeless and offers free water bottle refills.
Opening hours are Monday to Tuesday 9am to 5pm, Thursday to Saturday 9am to 5pm and Sunday (cakes and drinks only) 10am to 4pm. Closed Wednesdays.
9 North Street, Wilton, www.montyandmabels.co.uk