As noted in an earlier post ‘Fat Duck and Little Chef’, gastroboffin (and direct descendant of Dr Bunsen Honeydew) Heston Blumenthal was roped in to boost the ailing fortunes of the Little Chef chain of eateries. Now The Good Food Guide has acknowledged his effort by including the Popham branch in the 2010 edition.

Awarded a magnificent two out of 10 (for Good Food, which is a relief given the context), the apparently popular Popham site gained plaudits from punters according to this BBC article.

Having just returned from a smashing holiday weekend on the Kent coast, and having broken our fast at one of the 180 Little Chef emporia spotted about the UK on the way back, I am pleased to relate that, as in my previous report, most of the rest of the UK can still enjoy white bread toast and fried produce prepared au plaque en fonte, and precious little else for your free lolly.

We also had the novelty of the chef (approximately 15 years old) bring the food which the waitress/manageress (maybe thrice her lackey’s age) had had to go and help to prepare… The lady in charge was actually really sweet and funny, muttering something (half to herself) after I had paid and collected the three free lollies, about ‘going to see what the kids were doing’ as she stalked off towards the kitchen.

Meanwhile, ‘The Sound of the Lay-by’ drifts inexorably towards York and Kettering West, where it is noted that a minimum of 35 local jobs may be created. Imagine that as a business plan, employing people in your restaurants so there was more than one person to do everything. Astounding.

If Little Chef keep this dizzying recruitment process up, we may just be able to do something about this dangfarn unemployment rise after all!

(That link is a pdf, btw… go here if you want it explained in Grauniad speak why we’ll all be marathon dancing by Christmas).