When the doors of Downton Abbey closed for the final time at Christmas, millions felt they were saying goodbye to an old friend.
Never again will we catch up on the gossip over a mixing bowl in the kitchen – except that, well, we feel we might just.
We’re in the Edwardian Kitchen Restaurant at Pollok House in Glasgow and, wow, it’s Downton Revisited.
The house right next to the Burrell Collection is deservedly a jewel in the National Trust of Scotland crown.
Upstairs, the grand living of the Maxwell family looks very grand indeed.
But Scone Spy feels more at home downstairs – why isn’t that a surprise!
In the corridor we’ve passed the pantry, the housekeeper’s bedroom, the dry goods store and the butler’s room where you feel Mr Carson – or should that now be Thomas? – may be poring over a wine list.
At the end is the old kitchen, now the buzzing cafe and restaurant.
It really is like stepping back in time and you half-expect to find Mrs Patmore and Daisy hard at work.
The light green ceramic wall tiles, the old black ranges and the brass pots and pans hanging up are all a wonderful throwback to when this was the throbbing heart of the old house.
In fact, it still is and such is the popularity you may need to book to guarantee a table, especially at weekends.
But it’s a late weekday morning on a rare sunny winter’s day and we’ve got the run of the place.
We choose a table by the window next to a toasty big old cast iron radiator where we see through to the kitchen.
The cakes are laid out on the wooden dresser along one wall and the freshly-made scones are giant, irregular monsters.
We can almost hear them say “eat me”.
You can have them with jam and cream but, with a bit of a January diet head on, we pass on the cream.
I know, what willpower. In fact, what willpower?
When it comes to a choice between a chocolate slice and the gingerbread with butter we can’t pick so we have both!
Look, Scone Spy and restraint don’t sit well together.
The scone is crumbly with plenty of fruit and the ginger bread is dense but moist.
The chocolate slice is soft and biscuity.
The atmosphere is doubtless a lot nicer than when staff were slaving over those hot ranges.
But as we sit and sip our hot drinks and apt period lemonade (£13 the lot) we can’t help but think back to those times.
This is a coffee stop steeped in history, a real belter that’s so worth a trip to the past.