Warning: There are no scones in this post.
We started off with a trip to the doctor, breakfast, visits to two shops and a bit of photography for the presentation.
Then we set off in search of food.
The plan was to go to Carsington Water for lunch and a walk. Simple enough, you would think, and it was certainly easy enough to get there. There was a minor glitch with the new parking system – they have changed it since we last visited and the new signs aren’t very informative – but we eventually managed to work it out.
The meal was good in parts.
The staff were excellent and, I was pleased to see, wipe right up to the edges of the tables when they clean them. They also lifted the menus up and wiped underneath.It seems easy enough, but there are a lot of places where they clean a bit in the middle and go round the menu.
And, of course, there are places that never seem to clean the tables. Yes, Sainsbury’s, I’m thinking of you…
Service was quick and friendly and the food was piping hot. It was, if anything, too hot. The veg all came in one pot and we had to divide it up, which was tricky when the pot was too hot to hold.
We had the sausage pie. It had a lot of gravy in it, as you can see from one of the pictures, and didn’t seem to have much sausage. You expect sausage to be the most visible ingredient of a sausage pie. That was served piping hot too, with the result that one of our intrepid, and hungry, team of testers burnt his tongue and blistered the roof of his mouth. Julia showed the normal level of wifely concern.
It’s fair to say that we regretted our choice, particularly when we saw the massive golden cod and chips served up to the lady on the next table. I had nearly ordered it but it was served with garden peas and had decided to give it a miss.
Garden peas are for scampi or breaded plaice. Battered fish should be served with mushy peas. It’s a well-known fact, and almost a culinary commandment.
So, to sum up, the staff, cleanliness, veg, chips and serving temperature were all good. Unfortunately the sausage pie was not really up to the mark. It was still good though, just not what I think of when I think of sausage pie. If I eat there again I will probably have the cod.
Finally, after being photographed as we entered the car park, we had to enter our registration number and pay. It’s all a bit Big Brotherish. The real problem came when they couldn’t match the car to the number. The screen kept showing a white VW van with a number that was nothing like ours.
We tried twice. Then I walked back to the car to check the number, just to satisfy the attendants who were watching the machines. It still didn’t work. So one of them walked up to the car to check the number. It still didn’t work. So we had to walk to reception, explain, pay, sign a sheet of paper and ask for a receipt.
It’s not the fault of the people operating the system, but it was annoying., and I do think if you are going to photograph people you should do it accurately.
I think I’ll have to give it a three out of ten for customer experience and service.
Come to think of it, I may not go back for cod and chips, there are plenty of places to go without being messed about by the parking system.
Sorry the post is a day late, after an action-packed day out I typed half of it, fell asleep in the chair and woke up after midnight.