Take me home please
Goddard's, Greenwich
Season 2013-2014

Being in the Pie and Mash Club provides opportunities galore to be a tourist in your own town – as per that pie-noon pic before the magnificent Cutty Sark in historical Greenwich. It was a worthwhile diversion en route to our business luncheon at a family run business since 1890.


Just over the threshold of Goddard's we encountered Alan Smith, a long-time associate eager to imbibe eels after a 12,000 mile migration to his summer feeding grounds. Suggested middle names: Albert, Ross.

Goddard's main menu board offers a bewildering array of choices but if you simply ask for 'pie and mash' you'll stay on course.
Between us and that menu board stood a phalanx of soberly dressed gentlemen. Not an undertaker's convention, but a happy conjunction of the Lapis Magnes Lodge No.5024 with the Pie and Mash Club, thanks to the organisational skills of our mutual friend Paul Gale.

Here's what we came for.

Two J's –Jean and Judith – joined in the fun at the front of the shop.

Deep South bluesman Dodge Rogers dropped in for a guest appearance with his lovely lady Hazel.

Combining necktie and MCFC '68 muffler, and clutching a bulging wallet, Richard Lucas made a resolute entrance, determined to secure a top five finish in the league.

Peter Rolfe consolidated his debut season with a cooling bowl of jellies and a fizzy drink. The mild-mannered and deferential South Londoner has already proven himself a pleasing pie pundit in the mould of Trevor Brooking.

Susan Madigan turned up – to my statistical surprise, as you'll see later.

 

On a practical note, the tucker-pucker is perfect facial preparation for stewed eels.

[Thanks to the chap's meritorious efforts, The Pie and Mash Club's Facebook Page reached 1000 'organic likes' just a few days later.]

Goddard's upstairs dining room provided the necessary table acreage for Paul Gale and his formidable friends in freemasonry. The day's top scorer was fellow Leigh Paget, who tucked away double jellies, single jellies and a bowl of stewed eels in a performance redolent of past master and champion Graham Darlow.

[Right] Colourful characters of Lapis Magnes include Dick Roper, seen here ready to 'get some in'. His distinguished associate Andy March was sporting some quality cloth decorated with an historic heirloom handed down from his grandpa.

[Below] Unreformed and unrepentant Northerner Ian Burr couldn't resist the delicious but non-scoring temptations of mushy peas and gravy with his.

[Below] Finals Day wouldn't be complete without a Mister Pound Tie and a Team GB T-Shirt.

 

It should be noted that Goddard's has a license to sell alcoholic beverages, but the Club had its sights set upon these delicious top-drawer desserts.

Custard and ice cream were dispensed liberally over the traditional options – in my case a cherry and plum crumble.

For some, the attainment of nirvana is a solo journey, but Jean and Judith chose 'shared custardy' on the path to delightenment.
Let's pay tribute to our affable hosts Jeff and Emma. The unexpected influx of famished freemasons nearly caught them on the hop, but with the help of their dynamic staff they catered consummately.

It was time for the gongs, and here's a pic of me making a howler with Hazel Elliott. You see, Hazel's 9 point average over 5 meets seemed certain to secure the wood. But I hadn't counted on Sue Madigan's second appearance making a 5pt average from 2 and thus snatching the spoon of shame from the jaws of dishonour. Many apologies to Hazel, whose consistent underachievement has been . . . notable.

Mike Goldwater secured the Third Place Bib after another season of Bunter-esque bounty. But he still needs to watch out for that carbohydrate wall, which he usually hits 45 minutes after dinner.

Second Place Mash Spoon and grimace: Nick Evans, your Club scrivener and statistician, aka 'St@'.

Recipient of the brand new hand-crafted Gold Plate Award is our three-times-in-a-row winner, Chris Charalambous. To mark this unique achievement, Chris will now keep the silver 'cham-pie-on' ladle. Just as well, because he couldn't find it when he last looked in the shed.

It's the solid (-feeling) gold (-painted) trophy everyone wants to get their paws on. A big thanks to Mike Goldwater for devising this emblematic new award.

After the customary team photo, it was an enjoyable necessity to traverse the Pie Meridian in search of our chosen watering hole, The Plume of Feathers. Quaffing a frothing pint of Harvey's Sussex Best, I believe I reached a pie-er state of consciousness.

Where better to end the season than on a slow boat chugging west from zero degrees longitude?

St@