The Messingham Farm Shop and Cafe has recently opened in Messingham Infant school, which closed several years ago and had been empty. Everyone was delighted with the news that it was being opened as a Farm Shop with a cafe attached.
I visited the week it opened and I think the whole neighbourhood was there. The cafe was full with a long queue and the queue in the deli was nearly as long. I gave up and came home, deciding to visit later once the initial crowds had calmed down.
A couple of weeks later I was back on a cold, windy and wet Thursday morning. The cafe was busy but there were a couple of spare tables. The cake choice was definitely interesting – I’m a sucker for a good cake… What to choose – chocolate fudge cake, carrot cake, Victoria sponge, chocolate tartlettes, New York cheesecake, scone…. The honeycomb crunch cheesecake won and a generous size portion was £3.50.
I placed my order, paid and found a table. It was soon brought to me. It tasted even better than it looked with a crispy biscuit base, thick layer of cheesecake and chocolate coated crunchies and small pieces of honeycomb crunch on top. It was very good, but I dread to think how many calories it contained!
The cafe is at the back of the building and is a light and airy room with a very high ceiling; a typical Victorian schoolroom. There are a mix of tables seating either two or four and plenty of space between them. There is a small counter to place orders and salivate over the cake selection. This changes and also includes coffee and walnut cake and lemon tartlettes. The scones are baked daily and are huge and knobbly, looking just what a home made scone should look like. There is a good choice of teas or coffees to go with it.
The cafe also serves a range of breakfast from 9-11.30 from homemade granola and porridge to the full Lincolnshire. Hot food is served from 11am and includes soup, lasagne, macaroni cheese, fish and chips, burger, Ham and eggs, or salads or home made pie. There are jacket potatoes with a variety of fillings or sandwiches. This may not be the cheapest place to eat in Messingham as prices are more pub prices than cafe prices.
At one end of the cafe is a small Antiques Centre selling china, jewellery and old pictures. There was a skeleton and a guards uniform complete with bear skin. I wasn’t sure if the rocking horse was for sale or for young visitors to ride. Unlike other Farm Shops, this is not attached to a farm with all the children’s attractions.
The Farm shop is at the front of the building and sells a range of local products including flours, preserves and pickles, cakes and biscuits as well as some vegetables. There was an interesting selection of breads when I visited including a beetroot and spelt loaf. You can buy smoked salmon, cheese, pasties, sausage rolls, pork pies, olives, sun dried tomatoes…. They also have a selection of ready prepared meals including lamb in pineapple, sweet and sour chicken, pork and chorizo jambala. I ignored these and was more interested in basics like sausages, bacon and meat….
There were four different types of sausage. Being boring I stuck to the good old fashioned pork sausages which were coarse and meaty flavoured with sage. They were good both hot and cold. I was also tempted by the treacle cured bacon which looked dry and very black. It’s looks may have been against it but it also tasted good.
The choice then came down to the 20 day matured Shorthorn ribeye steak or the 30 day matured Lincolnshire sirloin. The ribeye won as it was better marbled. This was EXCELLENT – really tasty and very tender. Be warned though as it cooks very quickly – much quicker than the wriggling offerings from the supermarket!
There is also a small shop selling fresh flowers.
A very worthwhile visit.