Posts Tagged ‘vegan’


January 26, 2019

I tend to avoid any town on a Saturday.

The town was busy, it seemed even busier than when shoppers out Christmas shopping or the January Sales.

Everywhere was packed.

I had intended to eat at Shanti around one, arrived at two.

It too was busy, two spare seats at a table for four.

I was asked to come back in forty-five minutes.

I took a walk up The Strait, Steep Hill and into Bailgate.

I noticed yet another business on Steep Hill closing. No surprise, one of the junk shops that is rarely open,

On the way back down, a chat with Fools on the Hill, fools with a table urging people to support a Second Referendum, only they lack the integrity and honesty to call it a Second Referendum and call it a People’s Vote.  No surprise, entirely clueless the EU and having a hard time gaining any support.

No change at Shanti, but the couple on the table for four about to leave.

To my annoyance told we have to check our bookings.

It was then, ask a group of Indians on a table to move up to create space for me.

Begs the question, why not put me on table where there was room when I first walked in?

Half an hour before a couple of rostis served with a small portion of salad. I was asked vegetarian cheese or vegan cheese? In other words real cheese or fake cheese, fake cheese which actually cannot be called cheese.

A vegetarian cum vegan fake Indian restaurant.

I was looking forward to eating at Shanti, I was very disappointed.

I found it to be very cramped and claustrophobic.

The food was ok not great. Not sure what was dumped on top. It tasted like jam.

I have had a far better dosa off a stall at the Guildford farmers market, and far far better Indian food elsewhere. I have also eaten at far better vegetarian restaurants.

The irony was, I passed Curry Jacks by the river. I would but the fact a cold location, been better off trying their food.

Curry Jacks once a month an evening of their food at Coffee Aroma.


Lincoln Vegan Festival

April 7, 2018

I have to admit, I am no great fan of vegan food, a main dish yes but cakes are always disgusting.

Lincoln Vegan Festival held in the Lincoln Drill Hall.

If nothing else, an opportunity to see inside.

Wonderful ironwork. Shame the building has been partitioned and ruined.

Few food stalls. Most of the stalls were anything but food, animal rights, hunt saboteurs, tea, coffee, candles.

One stall selling vegan sausages. Yuk. Another had some very disgusting looking chips.

The only stall with food worth eating was Indian food. I though had already eaten.

Low environmental standards. Food served on plastic, plastic utensils.

The only stall I found of interest was a tea company from Hull, Leaves of the World,  where I stopped and had an interesting conversation on tea.

As I was leaving, I noticed a coffee stall. At first I assumed it was a roasterie, as prominently displayed a bag of coffee. That would have made sense. But no, it was a pop up coffee shop, Happy Cat Coffee House. I had a cappuccino. It looked disgusting and was not good.  It is not possible to make a decent cappuccino with fake milk. Apart from tasting disgusting, it looks disgusting. And what of the environmental damage caused by soy plantations, one of the main causes of destruction of rain forests? The takeaway cups were compostable or at least some were.  The coffee I poured down the drain.

It was then to Makushi aka Base Camp on Steep Hill where I was guaranteed a decent cup of coffee served in ceramic not a takeaway cup.

It did not happen whilst I was there, apparently the power kept tripping out. Either earth leakage problems or excessive power load.  The organisers claimed this regularly happens at festivals, ask caterers. Not something I have ever experienced.  Ask the caterers may give a clue. Excessive power load if all the caterers hit peak demand simultaneously. It is the norm to have a separate power circuit for cooking equipment due to the excessive load. If the catering equipment is plugged into 13A power circuit this explains a lot, and the system was reacting as designed by cutting out. This is something Lincoln Drill Hall should check. If they are permitting excessive load, they may be invalidating their insurance.

Pimento Tea Rooms

February 4, 2013
Pimento Tea Rooms

Pimento Tea Rooms

Assam tea served in unusual glass spherical tea pot

Assam tea served in unusual glass spherical tea pot

Pimento Tea Rooms is located near the top of Steep Hill in Lincoln. Entry is unusual, you enter through a fashion shop. Well actually a choice of two fashion shops. You enter through the street door, then have a choice between two different fashion shops, each of which leads into the tea rooms.

I commented on this unusual arrangement to the pleasant girl serving. She said she was aware of something similar in Devon. I asked Totnes, but she was not sure.

A large choice of teas, which ironically come from Imperial Teas of Lincoln, which until they relocated across to the other side of the street, used to be located beneath the tea rooms.

I commented on the contrast with the rude old crone across the street. I was told she was actually quite pleasant, but they do not like photos being taken as they are paranoid, they think people are going to steal their business ideas!

The tea rooms consist of a parlour, and two rooms which are more or less one room, with a very tiny open kitchen at the end.

Pimento Tea Rooms was one of the places I had thought of having lunch but I did not want to climb all the way up the hill, only to find it was not to my taste.

The kitchen is vegetarian and vegan, with a few choices gluten free, home made, locally sourced, they can tell you what is in the food, as they make it. A baker comes in and makes their cakes. From what I saw, it looks worth visiting one day for lunch.

Newspapers to read, local newsletters.

On a nearby table, I got chatting to an attractive female who I thought was a waitress writing out menus. No, she was a regular who came in to relax and read a book. She was writing out 40 invites for a kids party. I suggested BookCrossing. Both her and the girl who was serving thought an excellent idea.

I ordered tea. Assam tea, a blend of three different teas. It was served in a very unusual tea pot, glass, almost spherical. I was given precise instructions, to operate a lever to withdrew the tea. I lost track of time and forget how long, but I think it was four minutes.

My new found friend on the adjacent table said she operates the lever after a minute, unless I like my tea strong. I do not, I prefer it weak, and so I operated the lever.

It was excellent tea.

I had intended to have a cake, but had a large lunch, and I noticed it was already 3-30am and I was not going to make the market down in town as everything in Sincil Street seemed to shut at four o’clock.

My new found friend suggested I tried The Shed in Bailgate. I not heard of or seen. She told me to walk through a shop and it was out the back. The Shed was my next port of call. I popped in the butcher first and he confirmed The Shed.

Pimento Tea Rooms is well worth the climb up The Strait and Steep Hill.

Synchronicity: My new found friend was from where I live!

St Ann’s Well Café to close

April 24, 2010
St Ann's Well, Malvern Hills - Steve Luttrell

St Ann's Well, Malvern Hills - Steve Luttrell

After 20 years, St Ann’s Well Café in the Malvern Hills is due to close.

After 20 years, John Redman, who owns the now expired lease and runs the quirky vegetarian café, is to be evicted by an unaccountable quango and the café turned into a tourist information centre.

St Ann’s Well is set on the slopes of the Malvern Hills above Great Malvern, with commanding views over the Severn flood plain. The building dates back to 1815 and houses an elaborately carved water spout from which Malvern Water flows. It also houses the St Ann’s Well Café. The well is conveniently sited on a path leading up to the Worcestershire Beacon.

St Ann is the maternal mother of Jesus and the patron saint of many wells.

The water from the well is believed to have healing powers.

Out of thy famous Hille
There daily springeth
A water passing still
That always bringeth
Great comfort to alle them
That are diseased men
And makes them well again
So Prayse the Lord!

A plaque above the water spout celebrates the water.

Drink of this crystal fountain
And praise the loving Lord
Who from the rocky mountain
This living stream out-poured
Fit emblem of Holy Fount
That flows from God’s eternal mount

The café provides a fare of vegan and vegetarian meals, teas, snacks, a selection of scrumptious cakes and you can also fill your glass with water fresh from the spring.

This is not the first time the unaccountable quango otherwise known as the Malvern Hills Conservators has found itself embroiled in controversy. In 1963 they made the decision to demolish the “lump of Victoriana” known as St Ann’s Well. John Betjeman, poet and founding member of the The Victorian Society expressed concern about the plans for the building and his support and strong public feeling for St Ann’s Well convinced the Conservators to change their minds.

The café has acquired something of a New Age cum hippy reputation, which may be why the Conservators are determined to close it down.

Two ley lines pass through the café. Nigel Kennedy has used the octagonal room for a recording.

In a world of corporate conformity, we need quirky little places like St Ann’s Well Café.

The supporters of the café do not intend to give up without a fight. A support group has been formed on facebook and an on-line petition launched which all are encouraged to sign.


St Ann’s Well Café
Save St Ann’s Well…!!!

also see

The Alchemist