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Posts Tagged ‘cheshire’

If you walk back through A.T Welchs grocers shop on Hospital Street in Nantwich, Cheshire, browsing the well stocked shelves of this quality delicatessen, you will find a secret – the yesteryear Shoppe. Quite by accident I stumbled across the door just next to the cheese counter and it really is like stepping back in time into a 1940s tea shop – men with brown over coats serve you your freshly made order. More usually for us this is their signature dish of their own homemade “bangers and mash” from their own pork butchers. There is a care and a pride that is palpably translated into the food, how it is served and the feeling of the place.

A T Welch - Home of the yesteryear grocer's shop

A thought provoking collection of ration books scatter the counters. Old but familiar brands on large containers leap out at you, big OXO signs on the wall, Liptons Tea. You are transported back to a time where self service was unthought of, as was prepackaged goods – all was carefully measured to your exact requirements, orders would be left to be couried later by bike, in what ironically now we would consider now to be a very environmentally friendly way. I think that’s an idea worth reinstating and would instantly get rid of much bemoaned excessive packaging.

The yesteryear shoppe is a collection built up over years and it evokes a timely reminder that not so long ago, very careful thought was needed for the provision of food. You’ll often find a queue for the tea shop at peak times but rather than let impatience win, let it give you the opportunity to savour the atmosphere, look at the fascinating items, some of which I remember lurking in my grandmother’s cupboards, while the chink of tea cups on saucers, and convivial conversation surrounds you.

Move to Trash

Austin's yesteryear Grocers Shoppe

Do leave yourself enough time to brose the packed shelves which stocks all kinds of gorgeous jams and other useful food items, like milk, Welsh and farm butter, Jersey cream and a wonderful range of cheeses, including their own pork butcher, as well as chocolates, puddings, sweets, teas and coffee. If you can time your visit with Nantwich market day on the last Saturday of the month, all the better, as you can arrive laden and exhausted with your shopping for a lovely cup of tea in this enchanting tea shop. Oh, I almost forgot to mention, do bring cash, as there are no card payment facilities, just good old fashioned coins and notes – Do visit soon.

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A beautiful, sunny blue sky with just enough snow to make it picture post card pretty, rather than impossible to visit, was the sight that greeted us on the latest visit to the special Peak view tea room. As if by some miracle, my favorite table next to the roaring coal fire became vacant just at the perfect time & the warmth of the flames were all the more welcome for the sugar-coating of snow outside.

Amazing views from the Peak view tea rooms

Half & half was the perfect suggested solution to the dilemma that you’ll recall held me in it’s sway at my last visit to the excellent Peak view tea room – what to have from the large & tempting selection of cakes. So, from the large table of beautiful creations, with tea lights to illuminate my way, I decide on half a slice of the fabulous coffee cake & half slice of the delicious fruit cake. Always looking for new inspiration, there were some gorgeous cup cakes that were very tempting but I know already what I’m going to have on my next visit – syrup sponge pudding & custard!

After lashings of tea, we braved the Buxton to Macclesfield road once again, replete, thanks again to the wonderful, relaxing Peak view tea rooms.

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Picture the scene – horizontal rain, oh lets go for it, sleet, making the peaks barely visible. You’ve driven up & up the Buxton Road & parked by what looks to be a house in the middle of nowhere. You are running from your car in a vain attempt not to get absolutely soaked through & freezing cold. And then you open the door – a huge table of every cake imaginable greets you & they all look gorgeous. You quickly deduct that the difficulty is going to be making the decision on which one to choose. Which one? Ok, perhaps this is worth forgoing dinner for & cut straight to cake indulgence city!

 

The original "Moorland cafe" 1956

 

Welcome to Peak View Tea Rooms. The building was built for the express purpose of being a tea room. I’ve passed by many times but the joy of sitting next to the open coal fire on a cold & windy day (& let’s be honest, at that height on that road, it’s a good proportion of the time!). It’s like stepping back in time – it brings back memories of being at my grandmothers – & it warms the heart. The world seems to slow down once you enter the door, & the atmosphere created connects you to the people that you’ve gone to have tea with, it feels a connected community that is there, drinking tea, choosing wonderful cakes (they do dinners too but you can tell where my focus is). Visit as soon as you can!

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