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Barrow Voice is published by Barrow upon Soar Community Association. Opinions expressed are not necessarily endorsed by the editorial committee or the Community Association.

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Barrow Voice Team
Advertising Deadline
24th January 2004

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31st January 2004
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The front of Pretzels delicatessen

A new delicatessen opened in Station Road, Quorn, last April. I am not aware of anywhere equivalent round here. It sells food of such high quality and originality that I felt moved to share 'my find' with other readers of Barrow Voice.

The proprietors, Kate and Jane Henrich, take a great pride in their new venture. The two sisters have been brought up in the food industry as the daughters of the proprietors of the Thatch Restaurant. As children they lived in Beaumont Road and went to Hall Orchard School. They still think of Barrow as home.

What makes Pretzels different is their delicious home-cooked pies and puddings. My favourite savoury tarts include black pudding and onion, Mediterranean vegetables and mozzarella, Cornish pie with stilton, goats cheese and onion, and game pie. Sweet pies include plum and gooseberry crumble, strawberry and apple pie, bread and butter pudding and dark pear, ginger and nutmeg pie.

Rather than buying to take home, you may prefer to eat any of these, heated up or cold, in the cafe bar. Kate and Jane offer light lunches and snacks, including baguettes made to order, and quiches. Pretzels also sells a good range of more typical delicatessen fare: more than thirty kinds of cheese, both continental and UK country cheeses, salads, meats, organic breads, quality jams and preserves, speciality teas, flavoured oils, parsnip crisps (!) and some very unusual kinds of pasta.

Pretzels can be phoned on 01509 620888. Opening times are as follows: Mon and Tues: 9.30 - 5.00; Wed, Thurs and Fri: 9.30 - 6.30; Sat: 9.30 - 3.30.

What with this exotic selection and Pru and David Smart's excellent, if more familiar range of home-made foods in our own High Street, who on earth needs to waste time and taste buds in supermarkets?

Judith Rodgers


Ludicrous, I thought, as I saw it on the door mat, lying on top of a piece of coloured paper telling us how many burglaries there had been the previous month. 'Karate for beginners' it said.

Hah! I thought. But no! Unaccountably, my wife has picked it up and decided that not only is this 'just the thing' for her and our eight-year old daughter, but that's it's just the thing for us all to do. Together. You're joking, naturally, I said. Indeed not, and the next Saturday morning, there we all were in the scout hut, standing bare-footed in a line. Together.

And what a mixed bunch we are. Mainly children with a few adults. Rather more ladies than gentlemen. Each of us there for Lord knows what reason. At the front of the hall is a man in a white karate suit - I bet that's not the real word for it - with a belt that is, or has been, black. I eye this nervously. A worryingly battle-scarred black, it seems to me. But the lesson begins and Pete (the man with the belt that has been black) explains with endless good humour, the basics of the strange world that is Karate. Shotokan karate in fact (don't ask, don't know). Think of Bruce Lee. Think of kung fu movies. Think of flying kicks. Then stop thinking of these things, because Karate - in Barrow - is not like this. Very disciplined. Very courteous. A man - or woman - in a white suit with a coloured belt, might be about to punch someone else, but they always bow politely before they do it.

Over time, we learn a sequence of warm-up stretches and the basic punches and blocks, practising these in order as well. By the end of an hour-long session, you know you've had some exercise but you do feel sort of good somehow in a way that an hour in the gym doesn't quite manage. Karate is all-over exercise, working arms and legs and both sides of your body evenly. Much better for your body than 'one-action' sports like golf or tennis. Obvious enough if you think about it.

And it's an odd thing indeed but there is a kind of beauty and harmony in these sequences of movement. One hand goes out as the other comes back. Punch follows block. Block follows punch. A sense of well-being, of order.

Time has gone on and i'm still there on Saturday mornings (my wife and daughter no longer, but that's typical. ("It clashes with ice skating" or something.) A bit more practising and I may even get one of those coloured belts.

If you're interested in finding out more about Karate lessons for adults or children in Barrow, Pete Statham would be delighted to hear from you. You can reach him on 0116 299 6484 or 07719 975099.

Guy Silk