Bill's was recommended to me by a very kind fellow tweeter @emma_fryer. We attempted to get a table first time at around 2pm and my goodness it was heaving, there was not one table or bar stool to be had. The waitress informed us it would be at least a half an hour wait so we decided to try again later in the afternoon. Off we went punting to return at 4pm, whereupon there were a few free tables, not many mind you. From the moment you walk in you just know the food is going to be lovely. I loved the decor, the walls lined with shelves displaying Bill's line of chutneys, jams, rice and other goodies including the gorgeous French lemonade bottles. Bunches of chillis hung off the ceiling there were tables piled up with Bill's cookery book, which I was extremely tempted to purchase.
Under the stairs there was a delightful corner filled with deep vintage leather sofas and bookshelves lined with old leather bound books. All round the restaurant there were blackboards giving Bill's recipes away, lists of the products and sections of the menu.
We couldn't resist a jar of Bill's Gooseberry and Sloe Gin jam, just got to make some scones to go with that! Even that was wrapped up perfectly in pink and purple tissue paper tied up with raffia. Attention to detail is impressive, everything seems to be so well thought out from the moment you walk in to the moment you go home with your goodies, it's all understated, homely and feelgood. I was over the moon to see they now have a branch in Covent Garden so I'll heading over there very soon for my Bill's fix.
Although we were stuffed after our late lunch at Bill's I couldn't resist heading over to the Orchard Tea rooms in Granchester, that I'd read so much about, for a cup of tea and slice of Victoria Sponge. The walk there from Cambridge was idyllic though a little tricky manoeuvring the Bugaboo, but when we reached the small Gate I felt I was in a chapter of The Secret Garden (one of my favourite books as a little girl). Childhood excitement took hold of me as I nearly squealed with delight as we followed the little path round through the apple and pear trees to reveal green deckchairs around little wooden tables dotted around in hidden corners. We relaxed in a deckchair with our tea as Matilda ran round making friends with the dogs, birds and other guests. A perfect ending to our day in Cambridge.