On my regular pilgrimage to Jempson’s in Peasmarsh to fill up with diesel and with a bit of time to spare I nipped into the shop to buy a few ‘bits’ as you do. On the way in sat a very dedicated lady selling poppies, not an enviable task with the autumn wind whistling around your ankles every time the doors opened. She was very pleasant and doing a great job.
Just inside the main doors was the menu for the café, intrigue getting the better of me I followed the screens which led me into the seating area for the café, in better weather there was the option of eating outside if preferred, plenty of seating inside and out and Covid measures very much still in evidence but many customers choosing to ignore them.
Not wanting to miss an opportunity to continue our Rye News series of articles under the heading Dining Out I spoke to a lady who was sat down and about to tuck into a cream tea, her husband joined her and they were able to enjoy their treat whilst talking to me.
It appears that as a Jempson’s card holder you automatically get alerts with special offers and the like, the lady had just had a birthday and as a card holder had been sent a voucher for a complimentary cream tea, courtesy of Jempson’s, to mark her birthday. Clever marketing I thought, she had made the effort to go there to claim her treat, her other half bought an identical cream tea and they had bought their shopping there too.
The value of the voucher was £5.50 which entitled the recipient to a free cream tea including two large shop baked scones with butter, a portion of clotted cream, a pot of blackcurrant or strawberry preserve and a generous pot of tea from which you could get three cups comfortably, not bad for nothing!
Meanwhile, at the till, the queue of waiting diners was quite slow moving but the ladies behind the counter were doing a sterling job coping with the constant flow of new arrivals. Having been given your order (which you could have had delivered to your table if needed) you took your tray to the tables which were well spaced and arranged for two to four people. The food was fresh, butter was spreadable (not rock hard straight from the freezer) clotted cream and preserves were enough for two large scones and the individual tea pots poured properly and the tea was piping hot.
I asked the couple for their advice regarding jam and cream, which goes on the top and which goes on the bottom. Without hesitation the lady replied, “that’s easy to answer, you put jam first on one half them cream first on the other half them squidge them together, simples!” Brilliant I thought, everybody wins, no more intrigue, is this the answer to the mystery which has puzzled many of us for years? If so, Hallelujah!!
In summary, my trip to Jempson’s was an experience, the couple who allowed me to interrupt their cream tea were delighted with their treat and thought it good value, tasty and served in a safe environment. Sitting outside was their intended destination on their next visit, weather permitting, but, until then they left smiling and content, wishing it was their birthday next week too.
For me, I had by now forgotten what I’d come in for but with a tank full of diesel, at least I was able to get back to wherever I’d come from, and even though I had left empty handed my visit was fruitful, for Rye News at least.
Image Credits: Nick Forman .