Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Infront (of) Closed Doors. Again.

One of many, many at the hands of one. Failures that is. Today's being another, unless I choose to declare the noted usage of petrol as a success. I do not. 

So it goes, be it through lack of research, or lack of research, or furthermore through a lack of research, after trundling along a rather effortless journey to Brighton to engorge in the Brighton Farm Market, I was met with a rather all too familiar sight.

Perhaps it was another sign of my particular brand of burgeoning greed needing tempering, or perhaps how when a subject turns to food, all thought goes to the stomach. And as it does not contain a brain, I am not privy to the smartest of moves. Or, maybe, I am not at fault, for not only did the website state the "openness" of those doors between Tuesday to Sunday. But so did the doors themselves! And despite wearing glasses, I was not blind, and those rather shanty, scruffy doors, were not for opening. It would seem that the locals were not sure either, essentially all those asked contradicting one another. Or just not knowing of its existence. It would seem to be a strange location for a market, as it seemed to me to be a shop front, with side-streets only revealing rows of houses, and no clearings. Hmph.

Ever the optimist capitalist. Bored and slightly irked, I ventured down what seemed to be a reasonably kitschy looking alley lined with shops and cafes, hoping for some magical, hidden treasure of a place to rectify this tragedy and tempt me in to lunch. This did not occur, and a quick text to 118118 queried for the location of one of my reasons of coming down to this desolate "market" in the first place. With the address of the Plaw Hatch Dairy noted, I figured I may as well carry some sort of memento of this failed farmer's market scout/successful petrol wastage. There was nothing of note, though a pattern emerged. A pattern backed up by the general "kitschy" nature of the sparse surrounding people. A rather student type of vibe, with words like "healthy" and "dairy-free" thrown around everywhere. Sort of like a Camden-on-Sea. Without the skank [ignoring the main road]. It was however, rather silent, and devoid of any energy, to my pleasure. I decided upon a juice for now, choosing the more colourful of two juice cafe's. Ignoring whether the name of the cafe was "Germanesque" or a reminder of the thoughts stolen out of my head, I walked into the empty building.

The least fruity of juices was ordered once I located the patron snacking behind the counter, as I pondered for lunch options. I was not going to stay here, being the only certainty, and I would pass the aforementioned Dairy, though I was not sure if they had an onsite cafe' or restaurant. There was always home to add insult to injury.

Sipping through my appropriately green juice - it was called Greens something or other - at least that was pleasant. I think it contained apple, celery, cucumber, ginger and lime, though the predominance was of the sweetness of the apple and the tartness of the lime. Perhaps the vegetables in the drink contributed to the slightly savoury taste. Nevertheless, it was pleasant enough, and I heard it being ground into the cup mere seconds before. Quietly slurping the last remains, I fell out of the door and into the menu of a Dimsum cafe' located right in front. Well, I may as go away with a snack, Brighton is hardly near anywhere and at the very least it would serve as a modicum of worth of the journey [/delusional mutterings].

Not thoroughly encouraged, though perhaps slightly eased through the trouble of using the name of a Nepalese dumpling as its namesake, I walked into the diminutive cafe, to be confronted by astroturf. Everywhere. Hippy-safe. Put forth my order for the Peach Mini-buns, accepted the advised 10 minute wait, and commenced. When I saw the freezer being opened, and a pack being pulled out, from which 3 mini-buns were extracted, I also began ruing. Oh joy. Quickly exiting when the buns were "made", I carried on towards the car, hopefully towards real lunch and out of this growing pang of hateful disappointment that was brewing. I carefully opened the box of buns, fearing for my cynical tendencies to find scope of indulgence. It was rewarded.

Whilst the colour pink is indeed most fabulous, I do not quite share the same fascination when my food is coloured like a Barbie doll house. Nor looks to be made of the same material. This box contained what seemed to be toy food - infact, the "display" versions at the restaurant seemed more realistic, and they were squish toys. Or very, very old buns. I think it goes without saying what they tasted like. Not of peach firstly, and not particularly of toys either. They were sweet and doughy in a mild doughnut sort of way, but that's as much praise as I am about to give to the efforts of plucking some buns out of a package and dropping them into a steamer for ten minutes. I had to get away, and once again confirming that the locals had little to no idea about the Farm Market, despite being located in this case, on their same street, I departed, towards one of my original draws to the market.

Why had I chosen to come to Brighton this day? Well, I was going to come on the Monday, but the website instructed it would be closed then. HAR de freakin' Har. Egregious hypocrisy aside, I also wanted to scout another market, out of the slight pretentious contexts and occasionally empty promises of the London variants. Whilst not many of the advertised stalls seemed to be wildly different, there was a sense of honesty,  being a truer representation of artisanal fair, being a coastal town surrounded by farm areas. If with such surroundings their efforts still seemed cookiecutter-esque, they obviously, are. Well. Just terrible. But I would not find out. As apparently they are closed from Tuesday-Friday. But open from Tuesday-Sunday. It was not all a loss however, as I did saunter by the Plaw Hatch Dairy, bought my round of Raw Milk, Kefir, Live Yoghurts, and some pears too, for not too fierce an outlay. I also happened to spill half the Kefir inside the as the foil caps astoundingly failed to contain the contents of the bottles whilst rolling about on the floor. The aroma currently filling the interior is refreshing. I'm sure in a few days I will be able to accurately refer to the smell as being akin to a Mohammed Ali K/O.

Take two? I'll see how delirious the smell of Kefir makes me.

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