No dear reader, I’m not proposing to take us all into the seedier parts of the blogosphere, but to consider those token biscuits which sometimes appear when partaking a brew at various catering establishments or hairdressers.
I have had the opportunity for close inspection of these offerings on no less than three occasions in the past week
Firstly to my hairdressers. There’s an entire drinks menu to peruse whilst awaiting Marissa and for some reason I forego the wine – it is 9am after all and I do want to ensure I’m in a fit state to inspect the finished result in the proffered mirror at the end – and select my usual ‘white without’ coffee.
This brings us to the first biscuit of the week. A slim, caramelly-cinnamon sort of flavoured biscuit of the Lotus variety I’m always at a loss when these are proffered: the first floor of a 1960s built establishment over Superdrug doesn’t readily conjure up the cosy brown café culture of Belgium. Perhaps if they managed to procure some of the original, splendidly named Speculoos biscuits we sampled in Bruges earlier this year – especially if it was one of these – I might feel differently?
Then there’s my local farm shop. We live less than a mile away and went to try their café for the first time this week. It’s been open for at least a year, but you know how it is, those attractions close to home are usually those least visited, if at all.
And so to our repast. Not only did our gorgeously sticky piece of organic ginger cake arrive, the accompanying saucers sported a shortbread biscuit of the kind usually found in a Wetherspoons pub. You know the sort of thing – tiny, round and anaemic – guaranteed to induce an instant craving for an entire packet of chunky shortbread fingers after consumption. Luckily these are conveniently to be found in the home baked goods area of the shop on the way out.
Finally, on to a GNO rendezvous with my friends in Bristol at our favourite Italian restaurant. The evening is marked by much wine, laughter and pasta, plus large cappuccinos to round off the meal. We find they’re not accompanied by your ordinary common or garden biscuits, oh no. Instead their cheeky continental biscotti cousin – like these – makes an appearance. Sugared, thin, stuffed with hazelnuts and impossible to consume without dunking. Try them dry at your peril: they’re guaranteed to break at least a couple of teeth if you do.
As an avid and enthusiastic biscuit consumer, I’m not sure whether to be insulted when these tokens are proffered at the side of my coffee, or to just simply treat them as an ‘appetiser’ to my ‘main course’ later on. What do you think? Have you enjoyed any of these mini-biscuits on your travels or travails, or did you head for the nearest biscuit isle at your local supermarket to find something more substantial instead?