Today’s featured Blog is:
“I do like a nice tearoom” says Lorna, who first got in touch last year. Since then she has clearly been busy, not only bumbling round the tearooms of Scotland (and further afield), but even publishing a book about the same, while selling a delightful little range of handmade cards to finance her baking addiction.
We adore her frequent posts, beautiful high-definition illustrations and quirky sence of humour. Keep up the good work!
September 15, 2012
311 Byres Road
0141 357 2525
The stream of Lily’s eulogy was halted – but only briefly – by the tinkling of our electronic egg timer, which informed us that our Ceylon Ruhunu was good to go; if you’re in business of eulogising (or afternoon tea for that matter) you’ll find plenty to occupy you here.
‘Cup’ was a chance discovery and, like finding a twenty pound note in the pocket of a pair of trousers you haven’t worn for a while, a very welcome one indeed as we battled against the rain down in Glasgow’s “posh” West End. Once inside a ceiling-high glass frontage affords this quirky modernist tea room a light and airy demeanour, in despite of its compact size, and instantly banished our fears and demons of the wet and threatening Lothian streets. Seated efficiently yet with warmth we stared agog at the burgeoning tiered cake stands of our fellow diners, the weighty menu of teas and tisanes in front of us and the bar to our rear, constructed from an edible wall of fairy cakes.
We placed our order and waited with a strange mixture of excitement should the food live up to our seventeen storey high expectations and apprehension in case it should not. When it arrived what little professional veneer we had continued to affect was replaced by undiluted, childlike glee: each cake was a work of art, each sandwich a celebration and the scones tasted like they’d been plucked from the oven only milliseconds beforehand. Needless to say in all the excitement our eyes and the size of our tummies lost track of one another and when the euphoria subsided we ended up gazing (Amos: wistfully, Lily: tearfully) at the remnants of our repast but we needn’t have worried as doggy bags – although nothing as vulgar as a bag, of course – were on hand and we clutched them tightly under our coats on the subway journey home lest we be mugged.
Justifying 4 and a half pots was the easiest decision we’ve ever had to make; justifying why it doesn’t earn the coveted 5 pots was probably the most difficult. Certainly if there’s a better tearoom in Scotland we should like to know about it.
December 21, 2011
It was a glorious morning. The silvery water of Loch Ard glistened in the early April sunshine. The birds were singing a chorus of merry tunes, accompanied by Amos, sweating and cursing at the oars of our little boat. Our destination: the highly recommended Wee Blether Tea Room, housed in an eggshell blue beach hut on the loch side in Kinlochard run by a group of cheery Scottish ladies.
Inside was packed to bursting with customers, cakes, treats and goodies that couldn’t fail to satisfy even the most discerning tea goer. We sat outside at cast iron tables on the wooden jetty and satisfied our sweet tooth on homemade Victoria sponge and freshly baked melt in the mouth scones served with small, hot pot of tea. It was all going so well until we went to settle the bill and discovered that we had been charged an extra £1.00 for asking for a pot of hot water to top up the tea. Bloody Scotts.
Verdict: a pot knocked off for being stingy 3 pots/5
For more Scottish tearooms check out Noveltea.co.uk
December 14, 2011
The Library Tea Rooms,
Finding the small glen of Balquhidder, nestled at the end of a long windy narrow road to nowhere was predictably tricky, especially as the local signposts pre-date the death of Rob Roy in 1734, who is buried in the local church. But the discovery of the Library tea rooms was well worth the inevitable petty tussles [and nearly £300 damage to the car – ehem sorry, Amos] that ensued on the way. The Library Tearooms are about as tiny as the glen itself, and even the crisp white wood panelled walls did little to create the illusion of space, but don’t let this put you off.
A log fire was burning in the corner, and the built-in bookshelves were piled high with quirky reading material and delicate floral-patterned gilt bone china cups and saucers. We sat at the only table large enough to accommodate our hungry appetites, and feasted on scones fresh from the oven, filled with bouncy, joyous currents and served with perfect homemade strawberry jam and frothy whipped cream.
Verdct: a splendid 4 pots/5
For more tearooms in Scotland visit Noveltea.co.uk
December 12, 2011
As fair art thou, my bonie lass,
So deep in luve am I,
And I will luve thee still, my dear,
Till a’ the seas gang dry.
– O, My Luve is Like a Red Red Rose by Robbie Burns
Over the next couple of weeks, we’ll be up in Scotland, enjoying (amongst other things): heather, haggis, tartan, sporens, cold feet, rosy cheeks and of course TEA! Something about Scotland always makes us think of Christmas so hopefully these next few tearooms will get you in the mood for the festive season…
May 11, 2011
Chai Adventures in Tea,
The first adventure here is to navigate your way through an eclectic (some might say bizarre) cultural buffet of uncomfortable-looking furniture which greets you as you enter. We neglected the wooden ottomans, low poufs and contemporary wicker in favour of a divan by a pillar and some high backed thrones. Also unusual – although perhaps the mode this far North – was the presence of a pleasingly well-stocked bar, serving a range of promising-looking tea-infused cocktails served (from what we could gather) from breakfast onwards. So far so good. Rough little brown tea pots arrived which were disobedient to the point of stubbornness and sat on weighty brown perforated trays which enjoyed more of the excellent brews than we did. There’s a large range of (mostly) China tea including some personal favourites like Silver Needle and more exotic sounding specimens like White Monkey, both of which we sampled and neither of which disappointed one little bit – even at £3.50 a pop (this sort of price scheme does actually make sense if you plump for multiple infusions which they were happy to do for us at no extra cost). There was a choice array of bar snacks but slightly lacklustre collection of cakes; it pays to ask though because I was brought some wonderfully light oven-fresh scones, scalding to the touch and steaming to the tear. To accompany them, butter in place of clotted cream (unexpected in the nation that proudly calls itself Congenital Heart Disease home) and a plummy raspberry jam. Perhaps we were unrealistic to hope that the “adventure” we had been promised would include elephants and dancing bears, and the tatty laminated menus looked a little out of place but the concept’s sound and you’ll eat and drink in style.