Winning an afternoon tea at West Didsbury teashop And The Dish Ran Away With The Spoon was a delightfully lovely surprise. I’d forgotten that I entered a competition on Didsbury Life, so was most pleased after a very hectic week to receive a phone call to tell me I’d won.
Having been open for a year-and-a-half, the little tearoom is set on Burton Road, in the heart of West Didsbury. With gorgeous retro chairs and tables, vintage cake stands and vivid turquoise blue walls, Dishes and Spoons is a relaxing, bright and airy space.
It’s not just cupcakes here, there’s everything from carrot cake, red velvet cake, scones, biscuits and even retro hardboiled sweets. This is a Great British celebration of traditional baking at its best.
The slabs of sponge are washed down with a choice of loose teas from the Brew Tea Company in Liverpool or fair trade Union roasted coffee.
The afternoon tea is available on Saturday and Sundays from 1pm, and at £10.95 per person is amazing value. With a tier of sandwiches, freshly-baked scones and three cakes EACH, this is a belt-loosening treat. It has been recommended to me before, but I’d never had a chance for a tasting session.
Sandwiches are either egg mayonnaise or ham and mustard and are really just a polite nod to savoury before the cakey-sconey fun begins. The scones were beautifully light with that home-baked freshness and are served with a choice of jams and cream.
Chocolate-dipped strawberries are an attractive juicy palate-cleanser before the final tier of cakes. We were given cupcakes, chocolate brownies, red velvet cake and carrot cake. See what I mean about the amazing value for money? We didn’t manage all the cakes in one sitting, and got them packaged up to eat over three days.
The chocolate brownies were the moistest, fudgiest, most delicious brownie I’ve ever tasted. It still tasted good a few days later, and surprisingly hadn’t dried out at all. With a thick cream cheese topping, the carrot cake was a chunky hunk of goodness, and the cupcakes were delicate and pretty. The red velvet cake was just as tasty, with the deep red coloured sponge seeming quite dramatic against the white cream filling and topping.
Dishes and Spoons is run by Anna and James, who came back from a trip to Australia with a yearning to create the amazing treats they found (although I didn’t realise that Oz was famed for its cakes). Burton Road is the perfect places for this venture. I can see why it’s so popular, appealing to students, young professionals and families.
They also do a roaring trade in take-out, giving a fantastic bustle to the place. But be warned, they do sell out so don’t be late!
This teashop exemplifies everything Manchester does best. An independent place, full of personality doing what they do very well and doing it with passion.