Posts Tagged ‘Bailgate’

lunch at Gino’s

August 10, 2020

After a wasted trip to Heighington for lunch, one pub closed the other so grim a lucky escape no food, I decide try Gino’s in Bailgate.

There are many Italian restaurants, depressing that few are worth a visit.

Gino’s lunchtime is usually empty, last week busier, today busier still. Whether summer visitors in Bailgate or the silly Eat Out to Help Out I do not know. Had it been busier, I would not have walked in, as reluctant to eat anywhere that is busy.

Service very very slow, bordering on terrible, though staff pleasant.

Whether normally this bad I do not know. Maybe staff on furlough, caught unawares by the sudden increase in numbers and not increased staffing levels.

I had to request the special lunchtime menu, which I had seen mentioned on the window. It was not brought to the table until I asked

It was not a lot different to the menu I was brought, the main difference the more expensive items missing and what was listed a lower price.

I had intended to order a pizza, and on the special menu significantly cheaper if chose a more expensive pizza. I changed my mind and decided to order one of the special dishes, pollo alla crema.

To say the least, pollo alla crema a grave disappointment. The sauce weak, insipid and watery, not as should be, the chips not good, and the salad limp not fresh.

I contrast with the same dish or at least similar pollo crema a fungi at Caffe Macchiato, the sauce thick and creamy, the salad always crisp and fresh.

I then made a mistake of ordering a coffee, a cappuccino. I would not usually order coffee in a restaurant and certainly not in an Italian restaurant as Italians are infamous for very bad coffee. But I was curious.

It was worse than I expected, all froth and foam. I dipped my spoon in delved deeper, froth and foam with a  slight brown stain. First sip, a mouthful of froth and foam, next try, a slight taste of the coffee, and it was vile, Italian cheap over-roasted commodity coffee.

Cappuccino left untouched.

On leaving I asked a lady at a table what she thought. She was not impressed, poor quality food, poor service, failed to mention 50% with East Out to Help Out.

Neither was it mentioned to me the 50% Eat Out to Help Out discount. At least not when menu was brought to the table nor when I ordered. If mentioned, maybe diners would do as I did and opt for a more expensive dish. It was only mentioned when the bill was brought to explain why a 50% discount on the bill.

If anyone does eat here, please do not order the coffee, walk through the grounds of Lincoln Castle or around the walls to Stokes at The Lawn, and if evening Thursday Friday or Saturday, can sit on the terrace in the evening.

I then went to the ice cream parlour in Bailgate.

After enjoying a coffee ice cream I walked down Steep Hill to take a coffee at Coffee Aroma.

 

Lincoln coronavirus lockdown day one hundred and twenty three

July 24, 2020

First day of mandatory face wearing in enclosed public space.

Miss a bus which turned up several minutes early. Took the opportunity for a walk along the River Witham.

Following bus no opening of door or turning off engine when bus waiting at bus stops. Bus hot, no air, made worse by wearing of face mask.

A hot day, feeling very unwell.

No one I speak to is happy wearing a face mask.

But if I visit indie businesses, in out within a few minutes, restrictions on numbers, doors open, risk minimal.

If we are to stay safe, social distance minimum 2m, avoid enclosed spaces, avoid crowded places, avoid supermarkets and shopping centres, avoid pubs, download and install German track and trace app and share with friends.

It puts the onus on the individual who will be blamed when the inevitable second wave breaks out.

Walking through Lincoln Central Market, dead. Well done dysfunctional Lincoln City Council, kick out a fruit and vegetable stall upon which people rely, destroy a local businesses, and destroy the other traders in the market who have seen business fall off the edge of a cliff. Contrast with Louth, where on a Wednesday a thriving market that brings folk into the town, what a market town should be like. But dysfunctional Lincoln City Council would rather bring in soulless chains and destroy local businesses.

As always, excellent haddock and chips at Elite on the Bail.

The Lion and Snake quiet but soon starts to kick of with rowdy drunks.

Noise in Castle Hill, horrendous noise from a busker.

Another example of dysfunctional Lincoln City Council. No action.

Same problem in High Street.

I looked in Imperial Teas on my way back down Steep Hill. Excellent bean-to-bar craft chocolate in stock from Original Beans and firetree. But very disappointed to find firetree has additives. Imperial Teas is the only stockist of quality chocolate in Lincoln. Forage and Fill in Lincoln Central Market are looking to stock quality chocolate, but not yet as too warm in the summer to stock chocolate.

Cappuccino at Madame Waffle. Opened a week or so ago. Not open Monday and Tuesday. I sat outside.

The Lion and Snake toilets dragged past drinkers emptied in the street

July 14, 2020

Super Spreader Saturday, The Lion and Snake in Bailgate full of drunken yobs. It slowly got worse with urinating up the wall.

The following Saturday calmer, two portable toilets against the wall.

Tuesday the toilets padlocked.

No attempt to control drinkers. Not allowed to move from tables. One gets up, walks over to shout at a drinker in Prince of Wales Inn.

An open lorry pulled up in the street. Man in shorts wearing no gloves manhandled one of the toilets into the street, helped by two bar staff neither wearing gloves, both then go back into the pub, one picks up a pint glass from one of the benches, thumb inside the glass. None were wearing face masks.

Toilet dragged into the street is then emptied and cleaned in the street outside a restaurant and food shop. Stench unpleasant.

The same again with the second second toilet, though without help of bar staff.

Liquid from toilet cleaning flowing in the street.

Those who witnessed what happened were shocked and disgusted.

This should not have happened. Toilets should have not been dragged past customers, should not be handled by bar staff not wearing disposable gloves, should not be emptied and cleaned in the street, worse still in front of food retailers and restaurants.

Toilets should have been collected when pub closed, taken back to company to be emptied and cleaned.

This would be bad any time due to risk of disease spread. This at time of coronavirus.

Pub should be closed until further notice.

Action is need by local environmental health officers.

Elite on the Bail re-opens

July 4, 2020

First day restaurant side of Elite on the Bail open, for several weeks takeaway only.

Empty. I had choice of where to sit. I chose a large table to keep distance.

Staff in visors. The staff outnumbered their one and only customer.

Few will have ventured out, their social media said taking bookings, not reply when asked can turn up. Need to address their use of social media.

Few will have ventured out, Super Spreader Saturday, pubs full of binge drinkers.

My haddock and chips excellent. I had a couple of times had takeaway but nowhere as good.

Annoying a member of staff closed the door, then no ventilation.

Coffee by the Arch 20 minutes queue for bad takeaway coffee

June 27, 2020

Stokes at The Lawn closed at three, Misto not open never appears to be open, twenty minute queue at Coffee at the Arch for bad coffee.

 

It actually seemed like half an hour, but maybe no more than twenty minutes.

Are people in a queue because they see a queue?

I hate queues, I will usually walk away and go elsewhere or go without than stand in a queue, especially stand in a queue for bad coffee.

But beggars cannot be choosers, neither Stokes or Misto open, thus no choice but to stand in the queue.

I knew it would be bad coffee, I had a coffee when they changed hands early this spring, but glutton for punishment and you never know, maybe they have improved, got their act together, sourced quality beans, employed baristas.

Sadly not, the beans badged with their own name, but still poor quality beans.

And was the coffee bad? Unfortunately yes.

I walked through Newport Arch back into Bailgate, sat on a wall and took a sip. It burnt my tongue. It was scalding hot.

A cappuccino should not be scalding hot. I was at least asked did I want chocolate? I should not be asked. That is not to suggest it should have chocolate dumped on top. A cappuccino does not have chocolate. Why do cafes masquerading as coffee shops not understand, a cappuccino is not served scalding hot, the milk is burnt, chocolate is not dumped on top. Although the row of syrups is at least a warning sign the coffee we serve is not good.

There was a hint, the coffee may have been bitter, if made by a barista would have been an improvement. But better still, source quality beans and employ baristas.

I walked to a little square and poured on a garden.

And no, Coffee by the Arch has not improved since I had a coffee early spring.

Why do people open a coffee shop or buy a coffee shop if they know nothing about coffee?

Fish n chips Elite on the Bail

March 6, 2020

My third visit.

Stylish but poor layout.

First visit, service poor, second visit had deteriorated. I am pleased to report the service is improving, but at least three waitresses with hair dangling down.

First visit, fish n chips excellent, second visit chips not good. Today excellent haddock, batter crispy, the best I have had anywhere. The chips though could be better.

On each visit, fewer diners. Today almost deserted, not a single diner on the first floor. Reaction to coronavirus, people reluctant to eat out?

Pubs avoid, especially J D Wetherspoon. Restaurants, if not busy I would not avoid.

But what all restaurants must do, hand sanitiser as walk in and waiting staff before taking to table request patrons use. If they refuse, deny entry. Safety of staff and diners must come first.

Excellent views of Bailgate from first floor.

Wandering through Bailgate, absolute must this area pedestrianised.

Pedestrianise Bailgate

March 3, 2020

The local council proposal: rid the on-street parking and grant parking for residents (and of course nice little earner for the local council).

No. Get rid of the on-street parking, seize the opportunity for radical change, pedestrianise Bailgate and make traffic free.

The only surprise is that this has not been done years ago. For that thank backward Bailgate Guild that is not doing Bailgate any favours.

Bailgate Guild  are carrying out a survey. Maybe I should say ‘survey’. I have seen bad surveys, they nearly always are, slanted to deliver a desired result. But never this bad, so bad I could not in all honesty even call it a survey, this is prejudice and bias masquerading as a survey.

In local shops, asked to complete ‘survey’, but so-called survey takes as read have arrived by car, how many arrived by car etc etc.

Nowhere the option to say walked or used public transport.

Today I did both, is was raining, caught the bus, then walked to Bailgate along East Gate.

Usually I would walk up Steep Hill, a very pleasant walk, linger, but did walk back down.

At a guess, but quite an educated guess, 90% of those in Bailgate had walked.

The local council should treat this so-called survey with the contempt it deserves, ignore it.

A survey should ask, how did arrive:

  • walk
  • public transport
  • car

Then go on to ask

  • purpose of visit
  • time of day
  • how long
  • where visit
  • expenditure

I spent nigh on £50 if include a bill paid in the Post Office, which helps keep the little post office open.

I also walked around to The Lawn, had a coffee, then back through the grounds of Lincoln Castle, to then walk down Steep Hill.

There is on-street parking for about half a dozen cars. What do people do, drive round and round in the hope of finding a parking space?

Whilst I was walking along Bailgate, an idiot drove through at high speed in a 4×4.

Pedestrianise the street, make traffic free.

To do so immediately improves the environment for pedestrians, creates a safer environment, decreases pollution, contributes to reduction in greenhouse gases. Can then wander around without the risk of being run down, crisscross from side to side, will increase footfall, all the businesses benefit.

The focus should always be on making environments car free pedestrian friendly. On how do we benefit the environment, slow the rise in global temperature.

Creating a car free Bailgate would then create a pedestrian route from the High Street, up through The Strait, up Steep Hill, across Castle Hill and into Bailgate.

And for those who insist on using their cars, car parks nearby on two sides of the Lincoln Castle, and more car parking at The Lawn.

Bailgate could be divided into two halves. Castle Hill to Westgate business sector, Newport to Westgate residential. There would be an argument for resident parking in the residential sector. I would say no, grant permits to park in the nearby car parks.

Coffee by the Arch revisited

February 19, 2020

Since my last visit some time ago, Coffee by the Arch has changed owners. It had been for sale for some time. New owners took over 20 days ago.

On my last visit, service was so bad, I gave up waiting and walked out. And what I saw of coffee served not worth waiting. The coffee sourced not good.

Very little has changed, and not improved.

Service still bad, clueless on coffee.

Long wait before served with a cappuccino carpet bombed with chocolate.

I took it back. Second attempt not much better. All I can say in its favour is that I have had worse.

The coffee supplied by Limini, suppliers of catering supply coffee to the trade. Says all need to know about Limini when they supply syrups.

There is no excuse for sourcing cheap low quality coffee, or for not employing skilled baristas.

Local try Seven Districts. But would need to employ a barista to get the best out of their coffee.

I have never understood why anyone opens or buys a coffee shop when knows nothing about coffee.

Depressing, in a good location and could be an excellent little coffee shop.

Elite on the Bail revisited

February 19, 2020

I last visited Elite on the Bail an upmarket fish n chip shop last week, one week after it had opened.

In summary, poor design, poor service, excellent fish n chips.

Has anything changed?

Not a lot can be done about the poor design.

The service far from improving has deteriorated, now on a par with Burton Road Chippy.

Waitress with hair dangling over the table, wrong change on bill, bill not brought promptly to the table when offered to bring, but a few of the problems experienced.

There is a problem with the dish washing machine. Black flecks on all the crockery, a rough scum on much of the crockery.

Elite need to address the poor service  and the things that are going wrong. .

Suggestion: Deploy experienced staff from Elite Tritton Road, pay their travelling expenses and time to and from Elite on the Bail.

Fish n chips?

Haddock was excellent, even better than last week, but the chips poor quality, not up to the standard of Elite.

Poor quality of chips queried. Apparently difficulty sourcing quality potatoes suitable for frying.

Lincolnshire grows potatoes but cannot supply quality potatoes to Elite.

Elite on the Bail

February 16, 2020

Elite does not rank as the best fish n chip shop in Lincoln, it ranks as one of the best in the country.

First week in February, opening long delayed, Elite finally opened a new fish restaurant in Bailgate, Elite on the Bail, an upmarket fish n chip shop.

Has Elite managed to maintain their reputation?

First impressions, pleasant interior, but look closer and appalling bad design.

Walk in through a set of double doors, two people barely can fit in the airlock, one overweight would just manage. The queue to wait is the other side of the second door, get hit by the door.

Doors to the toilets very heavy. Weak or infirm would have difficulty opening. I cannot speak for the ladies toilet, but inside the gents, barely can squeeze into hand washing area before the loo. If someone the other side of the door walked in too fast, door smashes into them.

Hard surfaces in the restaurant, very noisy and not pleasant.

A very dingy corner beneath the stairs.

Disabled are restricted to the ground floor. If there was a lift to the first floor, I did not notice one.

Luckily not busy, and this was lunchtime, Elite Tritton Road would be packed if not a queue, therefore no problem obtaining a window seat.

Other window seats, if obtain, offer pleasant views out onto Bailgate.

No senior citizens special offers. This a big mistake, and should be addressed.

Hint: order child’s portion.

The menu referred to a board for specials. Yes there was one for fish options, but nothing for the deserts.

Elite Tritton Road take a pride in the potatoes used and the fish caught. No display to indicate the fish caught, potatoes used.

Serving staff not up to the standard of Elite Tritton Road, hopefully will improve. But not as bad as Burton Road Chippy.

Tea has never been a strong point of Elite. The tea was not good.

Clearing away finished plates, half drunk cup of tea was taken away.

And the all important question, the fish n chips?

The fish n chips live up to the reputation of Elite, if not excelled. If maintain this standard and introduce senor citizen deal (crass stupidity to have dropped), cannot see Burton Road Chippy remaining in business.

The ludicrous review Lincolnshire Live (Lincolnshire Echo) was quite rightly slammed on social media. No surprise Elite chose not to share on social media. Apart from ordering pie and drowning chips in gravy (yes, need to employ someone who can write and knows food) was heavily criticised for no mention of the seafood. There may though be a reason for this, and not the fault of the reviewer. No seafood menu was produced.

On leaving I asked to see the sea food menu. Tiny italic writing difficult to read. And no, not impressed. I am used to excellent seafood restaurants by the sea, fresh caught tsipira (sea bream) grilled over charcoal. For Elite I will stick to what Elite do best, haddock and chips.

And no, fish n chips was not dripping with fat, as one reviewer complained. I have never had fish n chips from Elite dripping with fat.

Bailgate needs to be made traffic free.