Which tea?

So, whose tea is the best? Well, not best as in best in the world, or even in town, but whose tea is better than the other’s? Is it Pumpkin at the railway station or is it the fancy hotel in Edinburgh’s Charlotte Square?

It’s not a hard question to get right, I’d say. It’s obviously Pumpkin. I’m not saying their tea is outstandingly good, but it’s serviceable and fast and only as overpriced as most other outlets of a similar persuasion.

We tried the hotel for tea the other day, having had a reasonable similar experience last year at the book festival. Hotel prices, but pleasant surroundings, and polite if otherwise wanting service. This time round we reckon we could have gone in and sat in the hotel lounge for hours (handy if you want to).

As it was, we had our tea (and I mean just the pot, not a whole meal) within half an hour, and after only two or three pointed requests for service. I could almost have walked to the nearest railway station and got my tea and walked back in the same time.

And then there are the scones at Pumpkin. Stirling Pumpkin. Still good. Yesterday’s was so fresh it nearly fell to pieces.

The hotel didn’t seem to do them any longer. Nor had they hung onto the comfortable, if old-fashioned, armchairs. The new seating arrangement was totally up-to-date, and quite uncomfortable.

Progress is a beautiful thing.


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