Eating Out: The Mill House Tea Rooms, Heckington

Heckington Windmill.

Heckington Windmill.

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On a miserable February weekend it was a delight to find a cosy little restaurant at Heckington Windmill.

On our first visit there, my family discovered a lot more than we could have hoped, not least the tea rooms which serve a whole range of homemade dishes, cakes and snacks.

The windmill itself is well worth a visit and you can take a guided tour of its five floors. It is the only example of an eight-sailed windmill in the country and it is thought to be one of only three in the world. At the moment the sails are being renovated, but normally the windmill is fully working and making flour which is used in the tea rooms’ dishes.

After a cold, wet and windy, but very interesting tour of the windmill, food and drink in the tea rooms was very welcome.

We all chose the leek and potato soup with mustard seeds, hoping it would warm us up and it did exactly that. It was a meal in itself, very substantial and quite spicy.

The tea rooms put on a daily specials board on which you will find a range of interesting dishes, with, as the website says, a Viennese twist. Among the dishes you will discover are goulashes, grostels and strudels.

On the day we visited we were invited to try a number of cakes made with Heckington Windmill flour which they are intending to put on the menu. We tried sponge cakes, scones, ginger biscuits and fruit cake, all delicious.

The Heckington Windmill Trust recently won a Heritage Lottery Grant of almost £1 million which will be put to use in developing the site and well worthy of it it is too.

While visiting the windmill, don’t miss out on the 8 Sail Brewery next door in the old engine shed in which we were given a tour and explanation of how the beers are made there.

For windmill and tea room opening times and full details ofwhat to do and see go to the website at www.heckingtonwindmill.org.uk

****½

Review by Graham Newton