The Plough – Fen Ditton

The Plough Fen Ditton is a lovely traditional pub & restaurant situated in the riverside village of Fen Ditton – a short drive from central Cambridge. This friendly pub has a fantastic beer garden which runs down to the edge of the Cam and has one of the best riverside views in Cambridge. It is also the perfect spot to watch the May Bumps boat races with friends whilst enjoying a jug (or two) of Pimm’s.

The Plough Fen Ditton is famous for serving up a fine selection of cask ales and is accredited by Cask Marque – the independent assessors of cask ales in the UK. The Plough’s kitchen also serves up a tasty menu of freshly cooked food comprising of seasonal dishes as well as pub classics.

This idyllic local pub has a rich history stretching back hundreds of years. The Plough Fen Ditton is built on the site of an old paper mill which then became a coaching inn before starting life as the village pub of Fen Ditton. The Plough has always been at the heart of village life and the owners say they are “proud of the history, character and charm residing within its walls”.

Whatever your tipple of choice, The Plough Fen Ditton will have something nice to wet your whistle. The bar of The Plough serves a great choice of quality cask ales, cold continental lagers, wonderful wines and superb spirits. Beers include Abbots Ale, Staropramen and the renowned Timothy Taylor’s Landlord Pale Ale.

This spring, The Plough Fen Ditton have some interesting new additions to the drinks menu including an award winning English vodka from the Chase Distillery in Hertfordshire. The decent wine list has plenty of choice whether you’re looking for a crisp White or juicy Red. There’s also a good selection of Rosés and sparkling wines too. For those non-alcoholic moments, the friendly bar staff can fix you something from their range of refreshing soft drinks or pour you a cup of delicious freshly brewed coffee.

Food at The Plough Fen Ditton is always fresh and never pretentious. All dishes are prepared from the freshest and tastiest ingredients by the dedicated chef and his team. The results are honest pub grub and delicious seasonal dishes that keep pub-goers more than satisfied.

Spring is in the air and The Plough Fen Ditton has introduced a new seasonal menu which heralds a vibrant change of style from heavier winter fare. All the dishes are lovingly made by hand and do not include any nasty processed foods. Only fresh quality produce is used to create delicious dishes perfect for the warmer weather.

Below is a selection of my favourite dishes from The Plough’s new menu.

STARTERS

  • Cornish sardines on toast with a sweet pepper & fennel compote
  • Potted duck-liver parfait with fi g chutney and toasted brioche
  • Fresh lamb kidneys pan-fried with mushrooms in a wholegrain mustard cream sauce, served on toasted ciabatta

MAINS – SEASONAL DISHES

  • Baked cod in a white wine cream broth, with chorizo, clams and baby potatoes
  • Grilled seabass fillets on saffron potatoes & samphire with a white wine sauce
  • Medallions of venison on honey-roasted root vegetables & butternut squash, with a bacon, thyme & mushroom sauce
  • Beechwood smoked duck on a salad of mixed leaves, orange segments & dried apricots

MAINS – PUB CLASSICS

  • Home-made burger with gherkin, lettuce, tomato, mayonnaise, onion & tomato relish served with chips
  • Beer-battered haddock with home-cut chunky chips, mushy peas, tartare sauce, spicy ketchup and Aspall’s malt vinegar
  • Pork & ale sausages on mashed potato with Savoy bubble and gravy

DESSERTS

  • Belgian chocolate brownie with vanilla ice-cream
  • New York cheesecake with summer berries
  • Lemon meringue pie with berry coulis
  • Classic Eton Mess

So whether you fancy sipping a pint of quality ale in the riverside beer garden or want to tuck into delicious seasonal food in the restaurant, The Plough Fen Ditton is a great pub to while away a couple of hours and is highly recommended.

The Plough – Green End, Fen Ditton, Cambridge, CB5 8SX
Tel: 01223 293264

Images reproduced from www.theploughfenditton.co.uk

Oxford Cambridge Boat Race 2011

London Life Coach & Relationship Expert Sloan Sheridan-Williams talks about the 2011 Boat Race. Follow Sloan Life Coach on Twitter @SloanSW_London and visit www.sloansw.com

Oxford won the toss and choose Surrey station, the official safer option despite the last four Boat Races having been won on Middlesex. Once umpire Rob Clegg dropped his red flag, the 157th Boat Race was under way.

Cambridge had a stroke rate of 47 against Oxford at 46 although a minute later Oxford were still rating a good 39 with Cambridge just behind at 38. Oxford veered off course slightly when approaching Fulham football ground only to be warned twice by the umpire but they maintained the advantage, and made it to the Mile in 3 mins 49 secs, one second ahead of our Cambridge crew.

Oxford lead the way by one length at St Paul’s School boathouse but broke clear at the top of Chiswick Eyot, still rating 34. Cambridge attempted to raise the rate by a pip and their cox Liz Box steered a nice tight on the corner trying to claw back the deficit.

By Chiswick Steps, Oxford looking increasingly confident as they took the advantage. Cambridge gave a gallant final push as the final Middlesex bend was in their favour but Oxford held them off, crossing the finish line in 17 mins 32 secs to Cambridge’s 17 mins 44 seconds.

Heartfelt commiseration go to the valiant effort from our Cambridge team.

What a race! In my capacity as a sports performance psychology consultant, I have had the pleasure to work with rowers helping them develop mental fitness to better handle the competitive pressure enabling them to put every stroke of practice to good use when race day finally arrives.

Last Saturday, I was asked repeatedly “What happened?”. Sitting in a local Cambridge pub, watching the aghast faces as the Oxford crew not only took the lead but left Cambridge painfully rowing in their puddles, I found myself explaining the psychology detriments of being favourite to win.

It is no surprise to most of you that we (Cambridge) were almost gloating from the onset of the race that we would not only win, but win our 2nd year in a row. It was a them against us mentality. However, the true challenge in rowing is the competition between the crew and every stroke of the race course, the 9 team mates and the clock, and most importantly each individual and the little voice inside shouting about the pain, the distance, the effort.

Success in rowing is all about the crew’s mental ability not only to handle the pain and fatigue of oxygen debt, but their ability to master the limits that others impose upon them.

Both teams undoubtedly trained to the best of their abilities physically and kudos to both of them, that course is a tough one. Once Oxford had such a lead, the Cambridge crew’s bodies and minds must have been screaming for mercy. It is in that moment that you either stay with the discomfort or you push beyond any limits imaginable, up the power, lengthen those strokes and bring the boat home.

The best way to win is to get comfortable being uncomfortable – this is true in life as much as it is in sport.

Winners build their success on their failures, so no doubt next year Oxford better watch out as Cambridge will be training harder and smarter this year to regain their title.