EDitorial ± 26-Nov-2009

Ipswich Lunches: Berridges

On a wet-as-wet-can-be day back in July, Team Light Lunch descended on a home furnishings store, Glasswells, not to behold the bedding but to blag a butty. On a particularly parky day in November, TLL transported itself to a jewellers, Berridges, not to have a butcher's at the bling but to bag a bite.

Not a long thoroughfare is Dial Lane. Nonetheless, this'll be our third time here after Dickensian Pickwicks and the landmark that is the St Lawrence Centre. There's a teensy clue as to the class of clientele from the board outside proclaiming "today's price for 9ct gold": £5.22 per gram, if you need to know. Almost as an afterthought, that same board mentions the (hidden away?) coffee shop and restaurant upstairs. I seriously wondered if we'd find a seat -- dining area is nothing if not compact and bijou -- but the boy Grenvyle had done well to land a corner table. It's ours as long as we vamoosh by the next reservation at half-one.

All very lovely inside and dead Christmassy. Why, even the condiments are seated in their own petite wooden sleigh stroke cruet. Sold on the season, I order one of the specials, the turkey & stuffing & cranberry & mayo sandwich with an Appletiser on the side. Could have had some blinis, it's that posh. Looking around, there's a light lorry load of ladies who lunch, plus us. Since we're effectively on a timer, I ask the nice lady waitress why the clock directly above us is a good five minutes out. Oh, it loses throughout the day, she says, so they put it fast.

Sarnie is served and is sumptuous, crammed with flavour. Nice here, among the tasteful artwork and people of influence. I believe this place was a breakaway from the long-gone and much-missed Croydon's restaurant. Certainly they're from the same mould. One fine tradition is the cake trolley, a sweet-toothed tumulus filling the centre of the room like a confectioner's dilithium reactor. Huge choice, all good. Plump for the bakewell tart -- ooh, yes, slightly warmed, please, with whipped cream. No need to rush, says the lady, we've moved the reservation to another table. And yes, a pot of coffee would be super. It's good. As long as you've got the money, it's very good.

If it was a car -- Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud.
If they were passing by -- Prunella Scales.