Posts Tagged ‘Farnham’

Cappuccino at Lion and Lamb Cafe and Restaurant

August 12, 2017

Many many years ago,  on a sunny autumn afternoon, I used to enjoy sitting outside in the sun in Lion and Lamb Courtyard for afternoon tea.

These days,  I would usually take a coffee in Krema, where the coffee is consistently good, but nowhere pleasant outside therefore for a change, sit outside this little tea shop cum restaurant, and an opportunity to see what their claimed artisan coffee was like.

I had checked their website, and found they laid claim to artisan coffee. A couple of weeks ago, I asked, and learnt it was Union, which is good coffee.

I said next time passing, I would drop by.

I had intended to take a coffee sat outside Lion and Lamb Cafe and  Restaurant sat in the sun. My long walk afternoon walk around Bishop’s Meadow, meant the sun had gone.

I had checked their website, it said artisan coffee, but did not say what. A couple of weeks ago, I enquired, to learn Union. I decided to try, with no great expectations, as the food is not great, which possibly explains why  whenever I pass by, always empty. As it was this evening.

When ordering, asked no chocolate, to save the hassle of having to send back if served with chocolate dumped on top.  Which sadly too often happens.

Cappuccino was brought with a bowl of sugar cubes. These I sent back. A good coffee does not need coffee. Only the disgusting concoctions masquerading as coffee served by Costa, and tax-dodging Starbucks and Caffe Nero needs sugar.

Cappuccino was served scalding hot. A classic mistake. But it was better than what is served at Gail’s, and had the potential to be a good cup of coffee, if served not so hot.

I also had a shortbread cookie. It was not great, made all the worse coated with sugar both sides. There is no excuse for adding this extra sugar, especially as the toxic nature of sugar is now well known. I can buy better shortbread in Waitrose.

On passing by later, I popped in and told the one and only girl, still empty, but tough luck in the unlikely event of a rush, that she had served the coffee scalding hot, that it would have been better not so hot.

She thanked me for the helpful feedback.

She said customers complain if not hot. I gave her a tip, play steam over the lip of the cup to give the illusion the coffee is hot. Also explain, if you want your coffee hot, please ask, but do not then complain of poor quality of coffee.

Problem is lack of training.  Also not working with a  skilled barista.

Union coffee being served by people who are not baristas, does not bring out the best in quality coffee. Neither does it do the reputation of Union a lot of good.

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Prayer Station

August 12, 2017

A strange art exhibition in Farnham Parish Church entitled Prayer Station.

The idea is, if I understood it correctly, to pause and reflect, meditate, at each prayer station. Each prayer station being a collection of objects.

One was ribbons, one  an assortment of objects, another a labyrinth (only it wasn’t).

The first prayer station shoes scattered on the floor. Somewhat dumb, walking into a gloomy church from bright sunlight, not seen. Ideal trip hazard. A nasty accident waiting to happen.

There was also a couple of paintings, that lacked titles or attributed to any artist. Whether part of Prayer Station was not clear though appeared to be part of the exhibition by association.

Labyrinths were quite common with Medieval churches not to be confused with a maze.

A labyrinth was an aid to meditation

Afternoon in Farnham

August 12, 2017

A pleasant sunny afternoon.

First time in weeks it has been possible to alight from the bus and walk along the riverside walk, through Gostrey Meadow and up through Downing Street. Last two visits it has been teeming down with rain.

Today they actually had soup at Gail’s, tomato, red pepper and tarragon. It is rare to see the same staff twice. Those who are there, generally helpful and pleasant.

Pleasant day, sat outside.

Castle Street is a pleasant broad street, but ruined by traffic.

Everyone knows the centre of Farnham needs to be pedestrianised, made traffic free, but never any action.

An idiot parks outside Gail’s in disabled parking bay.  Female gets out, does her shopping in Gail’s.

Farnham seem to be full of jerks who think they can park anywhere, usually on double yellow lines, on the narrow pavements. It is nearly always jerks with massive 4x4s.

Tables next to me, left dirty, no one bothers to clean. Not a good impression for anyone walking by.

Visitors to Farnham sat outside and were not impressed by the dirty tables.

Last couple of visits to Farnham the Parish Church has not been open. Pleased therefore to find today open.

A strange exhibition, Prayer Stations. Different sets of objects, one of which was shoes scattered on the floor. Somewhat dumb, as coming in from bright sunlight into a gloomy church, the shoes  are not seen, an ideal trip hazard. someone is going to have a nasty fall.  Even worse if then crack head open on the side of a pew or the stone-flagged floor.

As a pleasant afternoon, a walk around 23 acre Bishop’s meadow,  then through into the field with the horses.

I am never sure whether these horses are friendly or trying to push me out of their field.

I had intended to take a coffee sat outside Lion and Lamb Cafe and  Restaurant sat in the sun. My long walk, meant the sun had gone.

I had checked their website, it said artisan coffee, but did not say what. A couple of weeks ago, I enquired, to learn Union. I decided to try, with no great expectations, as the food is not great, which possibly explains why  whenever I pass by, always empty. As it was this evening.

Cappuccino was served scalding hot. A classic mistake. But it was better than what is served at Gail’s, and had the potential to be a good cup of coffee, if served not so hot.

A very quick shop in Waitrose and just managed to catch the last bus.

Afternoon in Farnham

July 29, 2017

Like last weekend, a miserable wet weekend.

On my way to Farnham,  stop off at Aldershot, check out Aldershot Live Music Day. As always a disaster, no publicity, a waste of public money, the local council going through the motions to give the impression they are doing something, whilst at the same time squandering public money.

I would usually walk along the riverside walk, up through Gostrey meadow,  up into Downing Street.

Too wet. I alighted at the same place, only though to look in Lidl.

On leaving Lidl, I contrasted with the appalling poor service in Lidl Aldershot. Guy on the till replied many have said the same. If this be the case, why has Lidl Aldershot been allowed to fester for so long?

Neither Phyllis Tuckewell nor Oxfam books on coffee.

No soup in Gail’s But at least they now take the sign down.

As walking through Farnham in the rain, I bump into Marios, Cypriot guy who used to run The Barn. I have not seen him since it closed.  The Barn is much missed. It was the only place in Farnham that served decent food.

A cappuccino in Krema. As I am about to walk in, the door is opened for me and it is Anga (not sure of spelling), who warmly greets me. He used to manage Carocoli, then left for Australia. I was most surprised to see him

I think the regular staff were a bit miffed when I asked that he make my coffee. Good as they are, they are not in his league.

I lingered in Cook. Too late now for Waterstone’s.

A little walk into Bishop’s Meadow, too wet to stay off the path, and  then the rain turned heavier.  I was surprised to find the hay has still not been cut. maybe too wet.

A canvas shoulder bag hanging by the hedge, wet and bedraggled, with a  note asking to tweet where found. Maybe a clever way to collect data on people.

A quick shop in Waitrose.

Coffee in Waitrose mainly brand crap commodity coffee. A small selection of what can be remotely classed as quality, of that, only Union quality coffee, and the Union is old coffee, past its best.

It makes the point, if you want quality coffee, do not buy from a supermarket, buy from an indie coffee shop, a quality indie store or direct from a quality roaster like Union.

In Krema, they have coffee from Horsham Coffee Roasters, roast date prominently displayed. If you wish to know why roast date important, ask in Krema.

Lion and Lamb Cafe and Restaurant is always empty when I pass by. No surprise, the food is not good, even though the menu is always enticing. Last time I ate there, a Moroccan lamb burger half cooked. Later I checked them out. One of the co-founders ex-Starbucks, not a good sign. Also claimed artisan coffee.

As I passed by I asked one of the helpful girls. She said they have Union Hand-Roasted, which yes, is quality coffee. Whether they know how to make a decent coffee, an entirely different matter. Gail’s has Union and they make awful coffee. I said next time I am passing, I will drop in and have a coffee.

Afternoon in Farnham

July 22, 2017

Coolish start, then once it rained, turned cold.

Had I left when not raining, but as I was about to leave, heavy rain, but even if I had, the rain  would have caught me later

Bus driver Aldershot to Farnham got lost, turned off the road for some inexplicable reason. Then had difficulty turning the bus around.  Not helped by parked cars and motorists not giving the driver sufficient room to manoeuvre. I think he thought he was on a different route. Easily done I suppose.

I would usually alight from the bus and walk alng the river and up through Gostrey Meadow into Farnham. Not today, running late, and may get caught in a heavy downpour.

Made it to the butcher, luckily they had not closed early.

No soup in Gail’s, but at least they had taken the sign down. Very little of anything.

I tried a cappuccino and granola bar. Cappuccino not good, granola bar dry.

Gail’s a little busier than usual, very noisy, loud moronic music blasting out, noisy out of control children.  I was glad to leave.

At least a  decent cappuccino and flapjack in Krema.

Lamb burger with sweet potato chips at Lion and Lamb Cafe and Restaurant

July 15, 2017

Whenever I walk by Lion and Lamb Cafe and Restaurant in Lion and Lamb Yard in Farnham it is empty. There is a reason for this, the food is awful and expensive, though the menu is enticing.

I inquired of the menu. The reason I enquired is experience has taught me  what it says is not what is on offer.

I returned later, to be told to sit outside as two parties of loud drunk women inside.

They should have told me this earlier, but at least the girl did apologise.

Lamb burger with sweet potato chips ordered. Not long coming. It looked disgusting.  It was disgusting.

When I cut into the lamb burger, it was not cooked.

To put in context. A burger at The Queen Hotel, a Wetherspoon pub in Aldershot, is better, cheaper and you get a pint of real ale.

A couple of weeks ago, a 9 oz burger from a stall at the Street Food Picnic at Allen House Grounds in Guildford was vastly superior, and it came as an extra with a side of new potatoes. But then it was a quality burger, that from Lion and Lamb Cafe and Restaurant anything but.

The only thing good about the experience was the girl serving was pleasant and polite.

I learnt later from their website, that serve artisan coffee. I saw no evidence of this.

I have been here a couple of times before, it was bad then, and nothing has improved.

I checked to see what TripAdvisor had to say. Once again, glowing reviews that are not true.

As I said to the couple who walked away, good luck finding anywhere decent to eat in Farnham.

Afternoon in Farnham

July 15, 2017

Another of those strange days when starts off cool then turns very warm.

No soup in Gail’s, though maybe good fortune, as carrot and ginger. Once again, a sign on the counter saying soup when no soup.

As always, Gail’s empty.

I walk by Barista Lounge, it too appears to be empty. Yet again different staff. I look at the food, probably been there all day. The soup has been the same now for many weeks. I do not even bother to ask. I walk out.

Cappuccino and flapjack in Krema. The only coffee shop in Farnham worth knowing about.

A walk around Bishop’s Meadow and Manor Field. The hay has not yet been cut. I notice far end of Bishop’s Meadow has been fenced off. Maybe when the have cut the grass they will graze animals. Excellent if they do.  What is strange, the fencing is not attached to the posts. Maybe something they will do later.

On way to Waitrose, I look in Lion and Lamb Cafe and Restaurant, query the menu. I do this as from past experience, what it says may not be what they have.

In Waitrose, Union Hand-Roasted appears to be the only coffee worth having, the only coffee with a  roast date.

I return from Waitrose, told to sit outside, as two parties of drunk women inside. Why not tell me when I inquired earlier, as I would not have bothered to return?

Lion and Lamb Cafe and Restaurant is always empty when I walk by. There is a very good reason for this, the food is awful and expensive.  But the menu is enticing.

I ask for lamb burger and sweet potato chips. It looks disgusting when served, it is disgusting. The lamb not cooked.

Whilst I was sat outside, a couple turned up. I sad they would not be able to sit inside. They walked off.

Three people turned up as I was eating. Their food arrived as I was leaving. I warned them it was not good, and seeing two had the lamb burger, I advised check as it was probably not cooked. They cut into it, from the look of disgust I guess not cooked.

I recommended complain. I would have complained but no time, I would have missed the bus.

Afternoon in Farnham

July 8, 2017

Another very warm day.

Alight from bus and walk along riverside walk, up through Gostrey Meadow.

I wanted a book on coffee, a specific book on coffee, Real Fresh Coffee. I looked in the second hand shops, including Oxfam bookshop, nothing on coffee.

Soup in Gail’s. Usually no soup, even though always says soup on the counter. I order soup, red pepper and basil, with bread. Usually a chunk of brown bread, but today two slices of white bread.  Also a small roll with smoked salmon. Quite generous portion of smoked salmon. The soup had an unpleasant bitter taste. So long since been able to get soup, I forget their soup has this unpleasant metallic bitter taste. I have raised this before, queried what it is, but no one knows.

Gail’s source their own blend of coffee from Union Hand-Roasted Coffee. Therefore should be excellent. It was so bad, never tried again.

Fresh smoothie in Krema. I also try again their nitro cold brew on tap. It is different to last time I tried. Slightly fruity notes. But still not good. Nowhere as good as when last year did cold brew coffee or the cold brew coffee off FCB kiosk at Guildford Station. I asked, no, now we have nitro cold brew, we will not be doing cold brew. Very depresssing, could serve quality cold brew, instead serve an expansive hyped fad.

Decided to take a walk around Bishop’s Meadow only find there is a garden party at the Old Vicarage, and my friends from Curries at Home doing the food. Unfortunate I was not aware of earlier, it started at three and I did not arrive until six. I would not have wasted time in Farnham. As always, excellent garden party, good food and live music.

Afternoon in Farnham

June 4, 2017

Yesterday afternoon in Farnham pleasant and sunny.

Barista Lounge finally has acquired a barista. Maybe try next week.

Cappuccino in Krema.

A walk around Manor Field.

Once again, piss-poor service in Waitrose Farnham.

Next Saturday a sustainability festival in Gostrey Meadow.

Philip Higham in Farnham Parish Church

April 29, 2017

I came across cellist Philip Higham  rehearsing in Farnham Parish Church. He was very good, ideally suited to the church acoustics. I was tempted to buy a CD but at £20, no way. I left, returned, and bought. Had it been £10, I would have bought two. It was though a double CD.

Philip Higham was quite apologetic. He has to buy them. That is the disadvantage of being on a record label.

As the acoustics were so good, I suggested get hold of quality recording equipment, record, master and release as a live recording on bandcamp.

If lack the funds, crowd source.

Also consider looping the cello. I gave Zoe Keating as an example.

Or could do a duo with bass player Steve Lawson.

In the evening, was giving a cello concert hosted by Tilford Bach Society.