Dory’s cafe: a Barnet institution

Written by  Tuesday, 03 June 2014 00:32
Tony and Dorina, their son and daughter, Giuliano and Angela, continuing a family tradition at Dory’s cafe Tony and Dorina, their son and daughter, Giuliano and Angela, continuing a family tradition at Dory’s cafe
When customer satisfaction is the only protection against the tsunami of change that is sweeping through so many of Britain’s high streets, few Barnet traders can match the long-standing loyalty of local residents for the refreshments served at Dory’s cafe, still going strong and now in the hands of the third generation of an Italian family.

It was in 1956 that Ottorino Pellicci – whose name had been shortened to Dory – left his father’s cafe E Pellicci in Bethnal Green Road, and started running his own cafe next to Barnet Market at 3 St Albans Road.
Ottorini’s daughter and husband, Dorina and Tony, now help their son and daughter, Giuliano and Angela, serve up an endless supply of full English breakfasts, teas, coffees and sandwiches as well home-made dishes such as shepherd’s pie, steak pie and chicken escalope for lunch.

Angela says they find it so rewarding when customers tell them they are the third and sometimes even the fourth generation of local families who have enjoyed a meal or a quick snack in a cafe that they remember from their childhood.

“One couple here at lunchtime have been coming all the way from Hatfield for the last forty-seven years; my granddad would be so pleased to think we are maintaining a quality of food and service that can win such satisfaction and loyalty.”

Ottorino, whose father and mother opened their cafe in Bethnal Green Road in 1900, was one of a family of eight.  In 1956, when he set up in business on his own, the Barnet cafe was being run by the Mancini family.

Sometimes you find yourself serving a television star or celebrity

The week after Ottorino and his wife Crimene opened for business Barnet’s cattle market closed, but the success of the stalls market ensured a regular clientele.

Angela has fond memories of helping her mother and father, Dorina and Tony: “Back in those days there was a queue to get stalls at the market and trade was so good we used to get queues outside our door. Over the last fifty-eight years we have become something of an institution.

“Sometimes you find yourself serving a television star or celebrity, or it might be someone popping in who can remember my grandfather.  Dad still does most of the cooking – that is what makes a cafe like this so special, we prepare all our own food and that is what the customers appreciate.”    

Caption:  Tony and Dorina with their son and daughter, Giuliano and Angela, continuing a family tradition at Dory’s cafe, St Albans Road, Barnet.

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3 comments

  • Comment Link Saturday, 18 April 2015 15:05 posted by j Dowding

    Dory's was recommended to me when I needed to arrange catering for a large number of people. I met with Angela and found her friendly, knowledgeable, and very professional. I met with her again to confirm numbers etc and I felt confident that Angela would deliver what I needed on the day. Everything was perfect on the day. Not a crumb left. I would happily recommend Angela and her team for small or large catering.

  • Comment Link Tuesday, 03 May 2016 23:54 posted by Steven Orange

    Found this fantastic Cafe last week. We travelled to Barnet from Strood in Kent, we searched the satnav for somewhere local to get a nice Breakfast and I'm so glad "Dorys" popped up. An amazing Family run Cafe on its 62nd year

  • Comment Link Tuesday, 28 March 2017 06:37 posted by Ian Maxwell Atkins

    Dear ,Tony,Dorina,Giuliano and Angela I am very happy to see that you are still open and working in the Cafe all together I was a good customer of yours way back when I was at school near to you Queen Elizabeth Boys near by to you and we loved your food very much typical English fair with a flair and I have missed it for years but I still remember wet & horrible weather and tucking into a your full English breakfast to start my day and even at lunch time all those years ago I have been living abroad now for quite a few years first Spain for best part of 29 years now I have been in Thailand living in Pattaya for 5 years & I am in catering I had a restaurant cafe called Bunny,s which is now closed but I am opening a cafe a bit smaller in April together with my Thai wife which will do English breakfast & lunch I would love it to ba as good as yours & I will try to make it as good as you made a lasting impression on me for all these years beleive me when I say your cafe is the best I have ever been in across London keep up the good work and food for future generations to enjoy all the very best to you all Ian. P.S. sorry to ask but why is Dory not in the photo ?

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