Posts Tagged ‘Lincolnshire’

Leadenham Teahouse

February 13, 2019

On the way to Grantham stopped off at Leadenham to visit award-winning Leadenham Teahouse.

What does award-winning actually mean? Not a lot as these days virtually anyone is up for an award and when given by Good Taste Lincolnshire or Good Taste Awards meaningless.

Last year Good Taste Lincolnshire awarded Coffee Bobbins the best tea and coffee shop in Lincolnshire which serving poor quality tea and coffee made the award a laughing stock, as not even the best in Lincoln.

This time around the turn of Leadenham Teahouse for this worthless accolade.

Leadenham is a village on the way Lincoln to Grantham, I say village, actually Leadenham Teahouse on the cross roads, though there is a village church and it does host to my surprise a polo club.

Leadenham Teahouse is a tea shop serving tea and snacks and cake and coffee, a Post Office, well actually a Post Office counter and a little shop selling tourist tat.

As tea shops goes quite pleasant though nothing special.

Custom was myself and a coupe of ladies. No one came in to use the service of the Post Office.

I had avocado on sourdough toast with a sprinkling of cottage cheese, and a little salad.

OK, but poor quality sourdough to what I have had elsewhere and poor offering compared with excellent avocado on sourdough toast at The Cheese Society in Lincoln, which also came with melted halloumi cheese.

In the centre a wood-burning stove emitting more pollution than a diesel lorry, but maybe ok in the middle of nowhere.

The tourist tat, but no tourists, and I could not see why there would be especially as the tea shop not open on a Sunday and closes half day on a Saturday.

Outside bench seats by traffic lights on a major road.

I had a cappuccino. It was not good, poor quality catering supply coffee and clueless on how to make coffee. Though in a all fairness a tea shop not a coffee shop and there was a wide choice of tea.

A few cakes from local bakery, but did not look at all appealing.

I was surprised no fresh bread on sale.

I was told try the farm shop down the road.

Good Taste Lincolnshire

December 26, 2018

Lincolnshire is an agricultural county, the second largest county in the country. One would expect quality producers.

Lincoln is the County Town. Odd then, a market town with no market. Odd then, a farmers market in the High Street with less than half a dozen stalls.

When wandering around it can be helpful to have a guide, though I prefer to go where my legs take me and discover not be led.

Good Taste Lincolnshire is a magazine which one assumes promotes the best the county has to offer. Only it does not.

It also hands out Taste of Excellence awards. Which only serves to emphasise what I have been saying for some time, so many awards that can get an award for almost anything these days, that the awards have become worthless, marketing scams nothing more.

One of the worst examples of awards is the Great Taste Awards. A meaningless award, not to say that what is is stuck on is not quality, but no guarantee it is.

Looking through the listings of Good Taste Lincolnshire, many many omissions that should be there, many many inclusions that should not be there.

Lincoln has three excellent coffee shops, Coffee Aroma, Madame Waffle and Makushi aka Base Camp on Steep Hill. Only one gets a listing, and yet several other coffee shops listed.

Redhill Farm Shop a quality butcher in Bailgate (they also have a stall on the Lincoln farmers market in the High Street) get a listing but not Andersons an excellent butcher in Heighington, one of the best in the country.

Elite fish restaurant, excellent fish n chips, again one of the best in the country, and yet no listing.

Many chains are listed. Utterly bizarre a promotional piece for Cosy Club, a chain, a fake 1930s bar so fake it is a Monty Python parody of fake.

White Hart serves excellent food and yes, deserves a mention.

On the other hand, The Cheese Society, the place for high quality cheese, with staff who know their cheese, not a  mention. Though Cote Hill Cheese which they sell does have a mention.

Nor a mention of the excellent fishmonger in Lincoln Central Market.

Food and Drinks Awards are presented if not hosted by Taste of Excellence.

One of the sponsors Lincoln Tea and Coffee. One of the recipients of an award, for Tea or Coffee Shop of the Year, Coffee Bobbins, a mere coincidence is supplied by Lincoln Tea and Coffee. What beggars belief, Lincoln Tea and Coffee awarded Wholesaler of the Year. Oh, and just when you think it could not get any worse, Lincoln Tea and Coffee supplied the tea and coffee for the fifty quid a head award ceremony.

The coffee supplied to Coffee Bobbins, which according to the their website, is an exclusive blend for Bailgate Deli, which they describe as a speciality coffee shop. They claim to only supply the best quality products.

At The Lincoln Tea and Coffee Company, our philosophy has always been that we only supply the best quality products and service to our customers.

We supply a wide range of fabulous teas and coffees of the highest quality, as well as creating bespoke blends for that added wow factor! We make our coffee and tea just for our clients.

Our coffee is roasted and packaged to a very high standard.

We constantly receive comments on how fresh our coffee is when bags are opened. This places us at the top of our industry.

We were approached by Barry when he was at the initial stages of setting up a specialised coffee shop in spring 2016. After initial discussions and listening to his business plan, we quickly started to get a picture of Barry’s vision for the Bailgate Deli, a vegan and vegetarian café/deli in Lincoln’s Cathedral Quarter.

We worked together to come up with the right espresso coffee blend and range of fine leaf teas and discussed the coffee equipment and skills that would be needed. In one day of Barista training, Barry quickly picked up coffee making skills he could start to build on and he soon discovered he had a fine palate for tasting when a coffee was just right.

You could not make up this bullshit if you tried. The coffee supplied to Bailgate Deli and Coffee Bobbins, Sweet Brazil Blend, neither has exclusivity as claimed, is some of the worst coffee I have encountered, over roasted to the point of being burnt, broken beans. Coffee usually has a pleasant aroma, this coffee smells disgusting. Far from being quality freshly roasted coffee, the bags had no roast date, this coffee is is low grade commodity coffee. They are not even coffee roasters, they buy in and bag. And no, they are not top of the industry, bottom of yes, top of no. One day of training does not a barista make (and if in any doubt visit Bailgate Deli and order a coffee, though I recommend not). Bailgate Deli is not a speciality coffee shop. No surprise then, the coffee served in Bailgate Deli and Coffee Bobbins undrinkable.

We have a host of bandwagons people jumping on, craft beer, coffee shops, coffee roasting and now gin.

Afternoon in Louth

September 17, 2018

Louth is a small market town in the foothills of the Lincolnshire Wolds, an hour by bus from Lincoln.

Main feature of interest, St James’ Church in the centre.

Monday quiet, few people around, many shops shut, too many have closed down, even the local newspaper closed down, a town that appears to be dying.

Caffe Nero moved in, local tea shops hit hard. What does that say of the local tea shops if they lose custom to Caffe Nero?

A handful of foodie shops worth knowing about, a deli near the church,a workers coop, a cheese shop. But although the deli near the church had Dark Woods coffee, it was ground, not freshly roasted and not the coffee they served. The cheese shop tea from Lincoln tea and coffee, which if anything like their poor quality coffee, will not be good.

Stokes as in Lincoln, has more or less a monopoly on tea shops serving their coffee, which means no quality coffee. One tea shop made the point they did not use Stokes, another is getting rid of Stokes as the service poor.

An ice cream parlour on the way to the bus station, ice cream ok, not good. Coffee would not say, others may jump in the act. This is laughable. If have quality coffee, prod to say where it comes from. Impressive but pricey bouquets made from cupcakes.

Places to eat a little tea shop and a pie shop.

Celery and cashew soup excellent. As was the quiche with salad and new potatoes. The coffee awful. Poor quality catering supply coffee, someone clueless on how to make coffee. Chocolate dumped on a cappuccino, the cappuccino froth and foam with a small amount of insipid coffee at the bottom of the cup. I was spooning the foam out.

One place that looked interesting, Auction House, had sadly closed.

The Auction House would be ideal for a speciality coffee shop, something Louth lacks and needs.

Excellent local strawberries in the front of a greengrocer, but when I popped back, dispaoointed to find sold out.

A tea shop that I had looked in, it called itself a coffee shop, but in reality and cafe serving paninis and catering supply coffee, closed at 3-30, many others including shops by four.

The streets interconnected by little alleys, one Pawnshop Passage led to a little sweet shop, Jassies.

Name to fame of Louth, the Greenwich Meridian passes through.

— to be continued —-

Christmas dinner at Butcher and Beast

December 25, 2017

Two days before Christmas, what was to be Christmas dinner at the Butcher and Beast.

Er, looks like sirloin steak.

Er, yes, sirloin steak.

A communication problem. What was to be a booking for Christmas lunch, was only logged as a table booking.  One would have thought, would have at least asked when booking, is this for Christmas lunch, but apparently not. Was not even aware there was a problem until brought a menu, and queried why. Only then learnt, had not been booked for Christmas lunch.

Hence sirloin steak.

Butcher and Beast is a country pub in the Lincolnshire village of Heighington, not far from Lincoln.

Food at the Butcher and Beast used to be not up to much, overpriced and very variable. Of late, much improved. Roast Sunday dinner a few months ago was excellent

Museum of Lincolnshire Life

September 15, 2017

The Museum of Lincolnshire Life is well worth a visit.

Various Victorian shops, a laundry, a print shop, inside a typical Victorian house, steam engines, a WWI tank, heavy machinery.

Lincolnshire is an agricultural county, Lincoln was a centre of heavy machinery.

The reason for this apparent anomaly, wealthy Lincolnshire farmers were able to invest in heavy agricultural machinery and steam engines, this powered Lincoln as an industrial centre.

The WWI  tank that changed trench warfare was designed and built in Lincoln. It was called a tank to fool German spies.

One small section, simulates in the trenches with mortar fire.

One of the sources of wealth, was sheep, the wool from the sheep.

Just inside the main gate, a Victorian postbox. I was surprised to find that it was still in use.

The Museum of Lincolnshire Life is a former army barracks.

Inside the entrance, maybe a former guardroom, a very unusual barrel vaulted ceiling, made of a pattern of terracotta tiles. The lady at the desk said in the event of explosion, to focus downwards. I suspect the opposite, a big explosion, shatter the ceiling and direct the blast upwards where it would do no harm. 

On leaving a little cafe. I suggest look to Copper Joe, in the guard house of what was once a military barracks in Winchester.

Late morning in Heighington

September 2, 2017

Heighington is a little Lincolnshire village of red brick and stone cottages.

Pleasant spring day in Heighington

March 4, 2017

A little after midday, a pleasant sunny spring day in Heighington.

Pleasantly warm in the sun. Crocuses and daffodils were in flower. Snowdrops have been out for at least a month.

Heighington is a village of stone cottages, narrow lanes, lined by stone walls, with tiles on the walls, not far from Lincoln.

If you want excellent pork pies, then visit the local butcher, hidden at the back of the Spar shop. He is famous for the quality of his Lincolnshire sausages.

Butcher and Beast is an old pub with an open fire, or was. It serves food, or did. The menu board outside contained blank sheets of paper. A couple of years ago, the food was overpriced and not very good. It now seem to have improved.

A small stream, Heighington Beck flows through the village, with a disused mill a little way upstream. There was a tea room by the Beck, but sadly this has closed.

Lincolnshire Library Cuts: Outrage from William Hussey, Lincolnshire based Author

February 4, 2015

Lincolnshire Libraries Decision – Reactions from Public & The Library Campaign #LibraryPlanNO

February 4, 2015

Washingborough: Walk along Cliff Lane

February 3, 2015
Cliff Lane

Cliff Lane

Up Church Hill, to the top of the hill, then a little way along Cliff Lane.