Friday, December 23, 2011

Bettys Café Tea Rooms

Northallerton, North Yorkshire (12/16/2011)

No trip to North Yorkshire is ever complete without at least one visit to Bettys Café Tea Rooms (and, yes, it is correctly spelled as "Bettys", with no apostrophe, and "Rooms" plural). (See my last 'blog-entry from December 27th, 2010.) This time we waited until my very last day in England (Cutting it pretty close, aren't we, Cindy?!) to make my sole/soul annual pilgrimage, and we went to the restaurant in the market town of Northallerton[1] (as far as I know, there is no Southallerton) on our way to a day trip to the scenic North Yorkshire seaside village of Staithes[2] (try saying that ten times fast).

This Bettys is located in an old Georgian (as opposed to a "new Victorian"?) building. We sat way back in the restaurant in a part of the building that may have originally been part of the courtyard. This was now a nice high-ceilinged atrium with a large shaded skylight. It was a pretty nice morning (well, for Winter North Yorkshire standards) overall and justified sitting inside-outside.

As I only get to Bettys once a year or so, I am usually pretty boring and always seem to get the same meal: Breakfast Rösti ; Cindy cheated and went off the Breakfast Menu and got the Bacon and Raclette Cheese Rösti, "A Swiss specialty of grated potato, Gruyere cheese and cream, fried with bacon and topped with melted Raclette cheese."

As this meal is one of the main reasons I love going back to Bettys each year, I am content with my "boring" selection. Cindy seemed to enjoy her meal, too.

The other reason I love going to Bettys is their extensive (and tasty) selection of Teas and Coffees (hence the "Tea Rooms" part of their name). On the suggestion of another Bettys aficionado ("aficionada"?), I tried one of their better brews of coffee, Nepal Snow River.,22065,44.aspx

Now this was indeed an excellent coffee, and definitely up there with the great cuppas I have ever had, but I am sorry to say it is not the greatest cuppa that I have ever had (Sorry, Gretchen.); that, of course, would still have to be Bettys Jamaica Blue Mountain Peaberry. This is truly the Marilyn Monroe of coffees, and at £15.00 per pound (that's about $22.00 'merican dollars)*, one of the most expensive coffees I have ever had, but worth every penny (or pence even).

*(10/16/2014, long after the fact, Edit: Ooops! I noticed that I was "juuust a bit" off in my calculations there. The 
£15.00 was not "per pound" ~ the weight measure and not the British Sterling measure ~ it was actually "per 125g". That equates to about $80.00-90.00 greenback 'merican dollars. "Show me the D'oh! Re Mi"?),19028,44.aspx

To supplement her meal, Cindy had a pot o' the Ceylon Blue Sapphire, which is really one of Bettys best teas, making it one of the best teas in the World in my opinion (and it's my 'blog, so my opinion is the only one that really matters). It is also one of the most expensive teas in Bettys selection, but I was paying for breakfast, so Cindy was sticking it to me good.,19147,107.aspx

As for Bettys condimentary supplementation, they offer two excellent fresh-made chutneys: Tomato and Caramelized Onion. I had a few dollops of the onion chutney and Cindy went with the tomato; both were good additions to the meals.

Much thanks once again to both Cindy and Greg for their exemplary hostage… er, hosting duties!

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Breakfast Rösti ~ 8.2; Nepal Snow River ~ 7.9; Jamaica Blue Mountain Peaberry ~ 8.5 (while I didn't have this particular blend this trip, I have had it many times in the past and dream about it all the time and can rate it from mmm-memory); Ceylon Blue Sapphire ~ 8.2 (once again, I didn't sample this tea on this trip, but I know this one by heart, also; I didn't ask Cindy for her GBS Rating, as I couldn't trust her opinion on such an important matter, anyway)

[1] Some additional info on Northallerton courtesy of our friends at Wikipedia:

[2] Ditto on Staithes:

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