Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Coffee and cake, and a little shopping

One thing I don't do often enough is to go shopping with my Mum. There's nothing wrong shopping with my better half, but there's always that feeling that he really doesn't want to look at all of the frocks in John Lewis'. Not that I can criticise, as I'm writing this, there's a smell wafting up the stairs of the scones he's got baking in the oven. You can defintely NOT criticise that!

Anyway, back to my story. It's my sister's birthday in a couple of weeks so we were on a shopping trip to buy her her presents. As the start to all visits to Liverpool usually involves breakfast, we started with that. Now, normally, we sup at John Lewis' 'a place to eat', but as we needed to be up at the top end of Bold Street for one of our prospective purchases, my Mum suggested we pop to The Italian Club.

We normally go to the Italian Club for lunch, so we weren't sure what we'd be having. Lyndsey (she was in charge, Greta served us) said we could have smoked salmon and scrambled eggs, which did sound tempting, but I'd already looked at the cakes on the counter! And it is an Italian thing (isn't it?) to have something a little sweet with your breakfast cappucino! So cake it was.

Two cakes looked tempting, the lemon drizzle (the one at the back of the plate in the photo above) and raspberry and chocolate (the one at the front). As we couldn't decide which to have, we had one of each and shared.

The lemon drizzle had pieces of candied lemon peel on top of the icing and lovely crumbly cake. The raspberry and chocolate had white chocolate on the outside, with dried raspberry pieces and was a lovely moist cake, that was browny red in colour. Both were delicious, and had been baked in circular tins with a whole in the centre (like German bundt tins).

As we were waiting for our coffee and cake, I had a look around the new extension that's just been completed. They've punched through what was the back wall of the restaurant, into the barrel-vaulted room behind and creating lots of light by adding folding doors and windows in the new back wall. There's even a small place for table outside, with some lovely brick walls forming a small courtyard.

The moulding of the vaulted ceiling has been picked out in gold, but when you look at it you can see that the room it was over used to be a lot bigger, as the mouldings disappear into the wall (forming part of the next door shop Red Lotus, though you cannot see it in there).

One clock is set to Liverpool time, the other to Rome time.
As well as adding more space to spread out and add additional tables, the Italian Club now also boasts a couple of lovely settees, one in the front window (see the photo at the top of this post) and another in the new extension (see below) along with a few tub chairs. Making the place ideal for a cup of coffee or a delicious lunch.

If you're ever in Liverpool - do pop into the Italian Club, you'll love it.

Although we were having a good time, drinking coffee and chatting wouldn't get the shopping done, so we had to leave. Now, as she may read this missive, I cannot reveal what we bought for my sister, but I can tell you that we bought items from Red Lotus (as previously mentioned, they're next door to the Italian Club) and the Chocolate Cellar (handmade chocolates to die for at the Hanover Galleries, Hanover Street!).



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