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Friday, 16 September 2011

Cumbrian Days

Yesterday was a beautifully sunny day . . . the first really sunny day we've had thus far on our travels and so we took ourselves off to the Upper Lakes for the day. This is the Toddster and Mitzie enjoying a walk along a Bridle Path at Pooley Bridge, at the tip of Lake Ullswater. I believe that is the Lake Wordsworth was at when he wrote about the Daffodils.

By afternoon we were down in Glenridding and as you can see the clouds had already started to roll back in, but it was still fairly sunny and beautifully warm and so we had an easy afternoon there of walking about and of course . . . this is where we had lunch. We were really surprised at the dearth of affordable eating establishments there. There were some really posh ones . . . but not a lot of lunchy type of ones. Perhaps people are meant to picnic there.

We ended up at a cafe called Fell Bites where we both had Egg, Ham, Chips and Beans because really that was about all we could afford to buy and two orders of that came to almost £20. (£8.50 each for the lunch and the rest was on two drinks, a diet coke and a hot chocolate) It did look really nice (except I forgot to take a picture until Todd had already begun to tuck in) and was quite tasty . . . the chips were a tad bit greasy however, which I don't really like. Greasy chips are a big no no.

You can probably see that better on my plate. As you can see I like the Brown Sauce. ☺

I don't like greasy chips and left most of them on my plate, which is highly unsual for me. What I was really looking forward to though . . . was stopping at the Westmoreland Farm Shop at the services at Tebay on the way back to where we are staying.

This place is a veritable Foodies Paradise!! I always make Todd stop here when we are up here in Cumbria, having fallen upon it accidentally on our first trip up here about 7 years ago. It's the BEST Rest Stop in the UK in my opinion.

Tebay is not only great for a sit down meal, if you are so inclined (after that lunch we were not), but also includes a fair trade cafe, food to go such as beautiful and huge hand-made sandwiches, the usual papers, sweets, mags, a boutique and then . . . . my favourite . . . the Westmoreland farm shop!!!

Although it is quite an unusual place to have a farm shop, Westmoreland is never empty. It's no small wonder when you consider all the delights they have to offer. The shop houses a fine selection of chutneys, jams, honeys, crackers, chocolates, fresh fruit and veg, charcuterie as well as dried goods such as pasta, a deli counter and a brilliant butchers. The deli counter has beautiful meat pies of a wide variety and assortment . . . the pastry crisp and salty and the meat all moist with no hint of gristle.

The dried pasta on offer was gorgeous. They had rainbow coloured bow ties, ribbons and tagglietele . . . although the pasta hater put his foot down there. He just could not see the pleasure in buying rainbow coloured pasta! It was beautiful though and I was sorely tempted . . .

The shop champions local and artisanal produce and is a brilliant place to pick up delights such as Mr Vikki's chilli pickles, Tweesdale Honey, Richard Woodall's cured meats and cheese from the Swaledale Cheese Company, plus more unusual items such as smoked garlic. Tebay's Westmoreland shop now has over 40 regular local suppliers and the list is ever-growing. I aways find it quite fascinating and can spend hours in there just browsing with a hand basket that grows ever heavier. They don't have a liscence to sell alcohol though so if it's a bottle of wine you are after, you'll have to pick it up somewhere else. They've got everything else though and yesterday we picked up a couple of fine bottles of Crabbie's non-alcoholic gingerbeer.

I also picked up some goodies for us to have a light repast last evening. We weren't in the mood for anything heavy after that heavy lunch. We simply feasted on some awfully tasty cheese, some fine crackers, bread, grapes and delicious Damson Cheese.

We loved both the cheeses I had chosen. There was a very wide variety of cheeses to choose from . . . goats cheese, ewes cheese etc. Todd's not too into different cheeses though . . . me . . . I love a good stilton or a blue goats . . . I stuck with the simpler ones for Todd's sake though.

The Eden Chieftain was delicious . . . creamy, close textured and had a beautifully well rounded flavour. I think this was our favourite of the two.

The Flakebridge was smooth with a flakey texture, and a beautiful tang.

They both went very well with my choice of breads and crackers, the sweet black grapes and that gorgeous Damson Cheese. We were two very happy campers, to say the least.

I'm not sure what we will be up to today, but it will be something interesting and no doubt tasty as well. We're back to cold and rain though so . . . we probably won't venture out too far . . .

If you'd like to see some other very nice photos of what we got up to yesterday, do hop on over to the Cottage to see more.


  1. What a shame about the lack of places to eat Marie! And that was a pretty pricey meal too.....still the photos are wonderful and I am glad that you seem to be having a wonderful time!

  2. Beautiful pics! The cheeses look delicious :)

  3. the cheese plate looks wonderful! great shot of the toddster & mitzi.

  4. I am glad you are enjoying your trip..I hope you print and frame that photo of your husband and doggie..It is picture perfect.he looks dashing there!

  5. YUMMY! Glad you founds some good eats...even if pricey. That's how it is here, eating out is so expensive, we tend to save for special occasions only. Nothing worse though than being on holiday, and not finding a good place to eat. Food is so bound up with a holiday experience, isn't it? LOVE seeing Todd & Mitzie... :o) Happy Days ((LOVE & HUGS))

  6. Such a shame it was so expensive and could have been better. I haven't been to Westmoreland Farm Shop but it sounds similar to the one in Rheghed at Penrith. We bought some Mr Vikki's Tomato and Nigella chutney, it was just sooo good. Glad you had that one good day, today has been seriously awful!

  7. I love this picture of Todd and Mitzie!! LOL gloria
    he look so nice! didn't Marie??
    oh you know I love him a lot! and you of course! LOL


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