Ladies Who Lunch

Waitrose coffee shop, Wymondham.

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‘A supermarket’ I hear you say: has she gone bonkers? Well, no: my aim is to go anywhere and everywhere, posh and (shall we say) less posh; regardless of cost or status, and anyway I have a rock solid excuse.

The day and companion for lunch were booked; we just had the location to decide. Then I got a letter from the NHS saying I was wanted for a mammo-thing (at 12.30) in a mobile clinic, situated .... you guessed it ...in Waitrose’s car park. So there you have it. I generally have my free coffee* when I shop, but deny myself anything else so I was keen to try out their food: half an hour later - duly squashed - we joined the queue, and peered at the menu board. In large letters it gave the item and the price, between these two bits of information was written something smaller; probably of no consequence, I thought.

My companion of high cholesterol chose a Caesar salad; my own reckless choice was lasagne with salad garnish: we selected a sumptuous tart each for dessert and I had my coffee while my companion ordered tea. We collected cutlery etc from the self-service taking our number flag to a table in a far distant corner. The coffee shop was busy, and a bit noisy, but not sufficient to bother us. My companion’s tea came in a sweet double-decker pot which served to keep the cup warm. I had been warned that the lasagne had a waiting time of 20 minutes, but it was sooner than that when a smiling waitress came looking for us.

I have to say, I have never had such a good lasagne anywhere except my own; it was rich and meaty with none of that thickened gravy sometimes used to pad things out. It was an absolute delight. The salad garnish was plentiful and varied, although the winter tomatoes were a little sharp. My friend’s salad that had come from the chilled self-service section was nicely protected with a clear sheet of plastic; she ate the lot, apart from the slivers of parmesan cheese which, was I paying more attention, I would have scooped up and put onto my lasagne – but it really didn’t need it. It contained generous portions of chicken, salad, and croutons and a little pot of mayonnaise of which my abstemious friend used only half.

The dessert tarts were big and delicious; the lemon one was sharp and lemony (we swapped tasters) and the Bakewell was suitably jammy.

Letting it all digest; I returned my attention to the menu board, and deciphered the smaller text. Between my ‘Lasagne with garnish’ and the price, it helpfully told me that it contained 710 calories. YOICKS and double yoicks! Thank goodness the place wasn’t licensed; my black coffee mitigated the damage somewhat.

I shall go there again, definitely – paying attention to the small print next time. Needless to say, parking and access are excellent, as are the toilets. It’s all very clean and the staff are always friendly and smiling. And you can do your shopping afterwards.

Bottom line
Caesar salad £4.50
Lasagne £5.95
Lemon tart £1.80
Bakewell tart £1.70
Pot of tea £1.55
Coffee £1.85* (I didn’t have to pay this)
TOTAL £17.35

*If you apply for a ‘My Waitrose’ card (free and doesn’t commit you to anything) you not only get one free coffee or tea per visit, but (with a large enough spend in the shop) you may qualify for a free newspaper – and they have started offering The Times.

Waitrose coffee shop, Wymondham.
Norwich Rd, Wymondham, Norfolk NR18 0SH
Phone: 01953 607772.
8:00 am – 9:00 pm

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