Stepping into the restaurant wasn't easy for all the customers clogging every inch of space they could. All chairs were occupied and by chance my mother and I found a table upstairs right in the corner. All wooden, no cushioning, everything mismatched - I felt as though I'd stepped into a Victorian cottage, and this was even moreso when the waitress in a long black dress and white apron approached us.
The menu. Oh man, the menu. We spent maybe 15 minutes trying to decide what to order. Having recently reintroduced starch back into my diet I was feeling completely overwhelmed. In the end I ordered a Jacket potato with prawns, chargrilled vegetables and mozzerella. I asked for a small potato and just a little cheese. My mum got the mushroom, egg, tomato and veg sausage sandwich on farmhouse brown. The service was fast and friendly. I'd read their portions were big but being raised in an Italian-traditional English background I didn't believe it.
The sandwich could have been half a loaf of bread! It was huge! My plate was so garnished with salad I barely knew where to start, The food was incredible. Absolutely wonderful. Though I struggled, I demolished every bite. I had a bit of my mum's sandwich and it was honestly the best I've ever had. Rich in flavour, generously portioned and very much cared for. Very obviously fresh and home made as well. I can't wait to return for one myself.
I have a few minor problems. I wasn't informed my potato would have butter on it and was a little disappointed when I found it had left a greasy pool on my plate. I'm also not overly keen on coleslaw (though it wa quite nice) but there was an awful lot of it, and I'd have liked the option to have it on the side (though I could have asked and I'm sure they'd have obliged. I had an awful lot of cheese considering I asked for just a little bit which makes me question the communication between staff.
Afterwards, I had a mocha (my first in years) and it was, again, the best I'd ever tasted. SO wonderful, but simply from a machine.
The whole place resonates tradition, the staff were rushing around with wonderful varieties of food, the menu is very broad and simply worth every single penny. A little extra comfort on the seating wouldn't hurt though and I don't think it would upset the atmosphere of a traditional tea house.
Do pay them a visit. Especially if you're hungry.
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