Season 2008-2009Duelling Pie Shops: A.J Goddard vs Manze's, Deptford
ROUND 7
30.01.'09
PlayedEels
(5 pts)
Pie
(4 pts)
Mash
(3 pts)
Afters
(2 pts)
Liquor
(1 pts)
SumTotal
NICK EVANS71320225128
TOM LEADER3094
LEN WILCOCK3054023489
TERRY CECIL5076
BEN HAYES4070
ANDY POTTER4058
SCOTT CECIL4022011555
JASON SHARP3022011553
RON COX2132022548
EDWARD MOSSE4045
JOHN LEACH3044
ANTHONY RUELLO2022011530
DAVID ROYALTON-KISCH2030
TED BATTS3028
ALAN TERRY2028
RICHARD LUCAS2028
GRAHAM DARLOW1028
ALAN SMITH2027
THOMAS KRAFT2024
TONY CHUNG2024
DENISE ROUSE2020
NICHOLAS KINGSTON-SMITH1017
JAMIE TANNER1016
DOUGLAS BENFORD1013
ANTO MORRA108
BEN HARVEY108
JACK MOSSE108
TAMSIN EVANS108

Any fruiterer worth their salt will tell you no apple can beat an English Cox's when in season. Likewise Ron Cox, and it is the Pie and Mash Season after all. Ron's crisp attire was decidedly modish. He had been for an interview in Canary Wharf, but I couldn't help thinking he'd just stepped off the set of 'The Notorious B.I.G.'

Himself, Len and I shared a narrow marble slab. As good a marker as any for a final resting place, I reflected:

"In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat pies till thou return unto the ground. Mashes to mashes, crust to crust . . . requiescat in pies."

Mr Biggie Smalls would approve methinks.

My tucker looked promising: a classic landscape with a mash-scrape holding the composition in time-honoured fashion.

The close-up reveals tasty highlights and if I'm not mistaken, a monogrammed 'M' on the top right of my pie lid.

Other food heroes scootered down from Docklands to join the fun. If you examine the framed memorabilia you'll discover that proto-TV chef Clement Freud once frequented this establishment. However that was in the 1970's, and it was the considered opinion of the panel that these pastries were punching below their weight. A pinch of salt per pie might have made all the difference, but it didn't stop Mister Ruello assembling all the food groups on his fork for that 'perfect last mouthful' in a deliciously dexterous flourish.

By this time I had my food bag well and truly on, failing to note the entrance of that precarious youth Scott Cecil with a group of fresh-faced fellow ephebes. I contend that you need be neither freshman nor Greek to take the Ephebic Oath.

Sadly Mister Sharp's alibi was fast expiring, which meant an early departure for our buddies from Tinseltown.

Then there were three, crossing the well-worn threshold of Goddard's Pie Shop, where we were greeted with familiar sights of yesteryear.

Our genial and polite host Clive was only too willing to bestow nuggets of local history upon us as we chewed the shortcrust in the window seats. The walls of this timber-decked establishment are festooned with antique pictures and photographs, contributing to a pleasingly nautical feel, without the nausea. The inclusion of Goddard's in an up-market Japanese magazine feature about authentic London shops is a source of justifiable pride. Clive is seen below rubbing shoulders with the Algerian Coffee Store. Which is also timber-decked.

View from the bench:

At Goddard's the pies are marginally better, but the liquor is a bit floury. And of course, no eels. I should have gone for the spotted dick dessert — which we have enjoyed here before — but there was no room left.

The result:

A slightly disappointing score draw, but both places add colour and character to this very historic quarter of London where Peter the Great learnt the noble art of shipbuilding, when he wasn't three sheets to the wind.

St@