• The Tenuous Purpose

    This Blog is built - not, as some might expect, on a flimsy whim but on a strong and single minded principle.

    That principle concerns Biscuits and their position in the world.

    We are really very keen on biscuits.
    As are many of you out there.
    We think.

    We wish to create an archive of Arrowroot, a backlog of Bourbons and a catalogue of Chocolate Fingers. Anybody can contribute an entry - or dispute somebody else's - provided they are not dull.
    Even Americans who perhaps don't really have the heritage of biscuitry that we are fortunate to have here.

    Or maybe they do and we are unaware of the full glory of the cookie.

    We realise that this whole subject is admirably and concisely dealt with by that excellent and unbeatable website A Nice Cup of Tea and a Sit Down. Our feeble efforts will be as the kicking of a gadfly in the face of their wisdom and experience but we hope that we may have a small contribution to make.

  • Biscuit Encounters on Twitter

  • The Synod of Biscuitry

    James Alexander-Sinclair of Blackpitts
    Gardener, Blogger, Journalist, Lecturer etc, etc. Much of his life is spent loafing around other people’s gardens issuing directives and generally cluttering up the place. However, like the great Mr Kipling, he does (occasionally) make exceptionally good gardens. (Although even Mr Kipling messed up a bit with the Carrot and Walnut Mini Classics.)

    Mark Diacono of Otter Farm
    He does sterling work growing many inappropriate plants in Devon. He dedicates a great deal of time and effort nurturing a plethora of plants that are (mostly) totally unsuited to our climate. His is a life of such extreme eccentric dedication that to start a Blog about Biscuits seems perfectly normal. He treads gently in the footsteps of people like the great William Buckland,a professor of Geology who claimed that he could tell location by tasting the local topsoil.

Biscuit crime wave

Courtesy of Karen Wilde

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Biscuits and the Class System

A recent press article postulated that, however unwittingly, it was possible to determine the social status of a child from the name its parents had bestowed upon it. For fear of creating unnecessary tumult amongst the gentle reader I won’t quote any examples however the thought crossed my mind that a similar prejudice could be experienced by the consumers of biscuits. Do we perceive that there are “chav” biscuits which should never disgrace the shelves at Fortnum’s and hence never fill the biscuit tins of the “upper classes”;   are there confections so superior that their very appearance in a forecourt 24/7 would be as unlikely as hen’s teeth. Do our pre-conceptions mean that we aspire to different biscuits as our socio-economic circumstances change ? A few unanswered questions but for starters – and a peek into my own prejudices.


Upper class – Bath Olivers

Upper middle class – Duchy Originals

Middle Class – Chocolate Digestives (not supermarket own brand)

Lower middle class – Viscount (obviously with aspirations to be something they aren’t)

Working Class – Supermarket own brand chocolate biscuits (cocoa content below 5%)

Classless – the much discussed Malted Milk and the omnipresent digestive (uncoated of course)


I can feel a thesis coming on . “Proletarianism and Biscuits in 21st century Europe”, “Are Rich Tea biscuits and Marxism compatible ?”

Simon Suter