Times 28111 – You can bank on it!

Time: 18 minutes
Music: Sibelius, Symphony 5, Gibson/LSO

Easy Monday continues for me, although I can never be sure when I am just on the wavelength.    But starting from the first across clue, the answers were pretty evident – what word starting with rip- means “on the bank”?   Not many.   So I continued at a steady pace, with only a MER here and there, and came home in a pretty good time for me.

We have had some complaints about heated exchanges here in the comments.   It’s certainly acceptable to press your point, but please try to keep it civil.   We do have administators, and we can delete comments if things get out of hand, verbum sap and all that.

On with the show!

1 Rest peacefully by a river with Scot on the bank (8)
RIPARIAN – RIP + A + R + IAN, evidently the only Scot.
5 Novelist who would keep the fire burning? (6)
STOKER – Double defintion for the author of Dracula.
10 What can you write on? Anything but the electronic version of The Times! (9)
11 Come across for hearing — guilty party may be this (5)
FINED – Sounds like find, in nearly all dialects, too.
12 A rescuer of creatures missing the last animal (4)
ANOA – A NOA[h].
13 Dodgy Rhodes uni promoted (9)
NOURISHED – Anagram of RHODES UNI – a bit of a MER.
15 Holding power opening very big meeting (10)
17 Drink only partially satisfies a king (4)
SAKI – hidden in [satisfie]S A KI[ng], second MER for this variant spelling.
19 French refusal to engage English? I don’t react (4)
NEON –  N(E)ON, an inert gas that doesn’t react with anything.
20 Bertha cuts fresh bread (10)
BRUSCHETTA – Anagram of BERTHA CUTS – you’ll have to count the letters carefully.
22 Worker coming to one cold region or another (9)
24 Faction‘s ostentatiousness (4)
SIDE – Double definition.
26 I would set about getting hold of fashionable garment (5)
DHOTI –  D(HOT)I,  the opposite of fashionable, which is why lift and separate is important.
27 Learner in audience puzzled about classical geometry (9)
EUCLIDEAN – Anagram of AUDIENCE around L.
28 US city minister returning to study (6)
DENVER – DEN + REV backwards.   One of the few states where the largest city is the capital.
29 Appreciator of pictures in East sitting in class (8)
1 Old boy not being seen putting on dress or skirt (4)
RING – R[ob]ING.
2 Decide firmly how one may go faster? (3,4,4,4)
PUT ONES FOOT DOWN – Double definition, one allusive.
3 Rough material getting criticised and substituted (8)
4 Like enclosure for tree (5)
6 Can containing one doubly fine meal (6)
7 Frank in Devon shows such benevolence (4-11)
KIND-HEARTEDNESS –  [fran]K IN D[evon] is the clue to the answer.
8 Unfortunate lad married flighty type (3,7)
9 Criminals admitting defeat? They may be in the soup (8)
14 Not showing dukes to be charitable (4-6)
OPEN-HANDED –  Double definition, one jocular.
16 This beast ultimately tried to attract partner and swaggered (8)
STRUTTED – [thi]S [beas]T + RUTTED.
18 Revolutionary’s charter in part of England (8)
CHESHIRE – CHE’S HIRE, where, presumably, they have lots of cats and cheese.
21 Cook belonging to place with famous restaurant by the Thames reportedly (6)
BRAISE –  Sound’s like Bray’s – possibly the clue should have read “famous restaurants”.
23 Islands full of fake plants (5)
CACTI – C(ACT)I, the Channel Islands.
25 With regard to home, start to replace source of energy (2,2)
IN RE – IN + R[eplace] + E[nergy]

139 comments on “Times 28111 – You can bank on it!”

  1. Never heard of ANOA and only the vaguest memory of Bray having famous restaurants since I’ve never been there. But all correct in 18 minutes for me, fast for me. I was confused at 29A since I couldn’t see why CE was class containing the actual words in the clue IN EAST. But I had all the checkers at that point so it went in with a mer anyway.
  2. An irritated MER at SAKI, but I suppose since everyone seems to pronounce it that way one might as well spell it that way. I biffed KIND-HEARTEDNESS from the K and -, only parsed it after submitting. NHO Bray’s, but could think of nothing else for BRAISE.
  3. Was heading for a fast time then slowed up in the bottom half. My LOI were CINEASTE and CACTI with CACTI as COD.
    I can never remember whether it’s SAKI or SAKE so I was grateful for 8d. Lexico gives both but Kevin, who knows about these things, prefers SAKE….I think.
    Sorry to say, vinyl that a full third of US states have their largest city as the capital.
    1. In Japanese, it’s SAKE, pronounced [sake]. Japanese vowels–there are only 5–are pronounced more or less like Italian or Spanish and should be easy enough, but we get saki and carryoaky. (In one of the Bond movies, Connery goes to Kobi.) But they’re English words now, so it really doesn’t matter how the Japanese pronounce them. Still, you’ll never catch me saying ‘saki’.
  4. So now I know that the word RIPARIAN exists. I know – gettable from the wordplay if you know all Scots are named Ian, which I suppose I should as my son-in-law is one, but he spells it with a superfluous I.

    Other than the two I didn’t get an enjoyable run through. Thanks for the blog – never heard of BRAY’S. Is it really famous enough to be a crossword clue?


    1. The restaurant is not called Bray’s. Bray is the name of the village location and has two Michelin 3-Star restaurants, The Waterside Inn (chef Alain Roux), and The Fat Duck (prop. Heston Blumenthal). The latter is perhaps more widely known since it draws attention to itself by including unlikely-sounding dishes on its menu such as bacon-and-egg ice cream and snail porridge. It describes itself as specialising in ‘molecular gastronomy’ and ‘multi-sensory cooking’.

      Edited at 2021-10-18 06:20 am (UTC)

      1. Much of this fare was quite cheesy
        And “BRAISE” meaning “cook” was too easy
        Though Bray’s I did know
        For me, it’s A NO
        And “snail porridge” just makes me feel queasy
        1. I had a snail pie once (in N-St-G) that proved to be surprisingly edible, but I’m not sure I would repeat the experience.
    2. I enjoyed the taster menu once in the fat duck — pretentious, yes, expensive, yes, fantastic experience, YES!
  5. Had a glimpse at the magical sub-10, but hovered over RING for a while at the end there.

    Good start to the week. Forgot to go back and check the NHO ANOA, the “probably correct” BRAISE and the totally unparsed KINDHEARTEDNESS, but got away with all three on this occasion.

    Thanks Vinyl and setter.

  6. I had a slight hesitation over a couple of answers today, namely ANOA and SIDE, particularly the latter as I didn’t know it could mean ostentatious. Obviously the delay was not too great as I don’t often get much quicker than this.

    I’ve thought about going to the Fat Duck in Bray before but I’ve not been able to bring myself to remortgage in order to do so. I have been to Heston Blumenthal’s two pubs in Bray which were relatively reasonably priced and did very good food. No snail porridge or egg and bacon ice cream, but perhaps that’s a good thing?

    1. Dinner at the Mandarin Oriental is marginally cheaper if you want to try Heston’s style without forking out for Bray

    2. I took my daughter and husband there on a rare visit to Europe and didn’t find it expensive at all. But only because I didn’t dare look at the bill for more than two years!
  7. Didn’t rate that as easy as the SNITCH score, somewhat hampered by
    – unknowns (NHO ANOA, IN RE, Brays as gastro-venue)
    – vaguely-awares (RIPARIAN, SIDE in that sense)
    Still don’t understand why “not showing dukes” is a jocular definition for OPEN-HANDED?

    Anyway, my big error was biffing CACOS as islands for 23d, making 29a unsolvable without using the made-up ASCEASTE.

    Not an auspicious start to the week, maybe I got up too early …or maybe I should just stop making feeble excuses!

    1. Were you maybe thinking of Cocos? I was, but couldn’t make anything out of it, and finally got the I.
      ‘Dukes’ is as Jack says, although I’ve only seen it in “Put up yer dukes!”, and I haven’t seen that since childhood.
      1. I remember the expression “Put up yer dukes!”, but I think only previous explanations here as to why dukes = fists. It’s one of those crossword things really.
        1. Dukes is irregular CRS – ‘Duke of Yorks = forks (fingers),
          switch it round it became Dukes. Just as ‘apples’ are stairs, when the pears go missing.
            1. Myy pleasure, Sir! An American explaining CRS to an Englishman! Another first!? This site gets ever more interesting
      2. I was thinking of the Turks and Caicos islands – unfortunately my spelling, as well as my biffing, was off-target!

        Thanks all for the dukes explanation.

  8. A very enjoyable puzzle that took me exactly 30 minutes, so I was right on my half-hour target almost to the second.

    I’d have been quicker but I was distracted at 7dn trying to think of a Devon connection when there wasn’t one to be had, and also – perhaps because of the answer at 14dn – my first thought that wouldn’t go away was OPEN-HEARTEDNESS, and I actually went as far as writing it in.

    MER at LACED which seems a bit more than ‘criticise’, like ‘abuse’, and then only when combined with ‘into’.

    ANO was unknown or forgotten, and I can never remember IN RE (underline missing in the clue, Vinyl, and the one above it).

    Edited at 2021-10-18 07:24 am (UTC)

  9. CINEASTE was not in my vocabulary — it is now. I was thinking ‘assessor’ and ’Cocos’ or Keeling Islands until the cacti turned up at the last minute.

    FOI 24ac SIDE

    (LOI) 23dn CACTI


    WOD 1ac RIPARIAN — a word we had not that long ago — so a riparian reptile is a thing, or is that an amphibian? Initially I divined that TAX would be the last three letters, but they weren’t, innit!?

    Edited at 2021-10-18 06:38 am (UTC)

  10. 1.5 Australian Magoos, so not too shabby for me. Must have been to Bray once, since it us near where I was brought up, but never to any of its fancy eateries.
  11. After 20 mins pre-brekker I eventually got Braise, which I thought was a bit too tricksy, so I gave up on 1ac and 1dn. I’m glad I did.
    Thanks setter and Vinyl.
  12. 24 minutes, LOI CINEASTE, staggered it was all correct. In one of my novels, I did a riff on the company PRO being torn apart by the CEO for putting on expenses a lunch at the Waterside Inn at Bray. The CEO, a bluff northerner, asked if the Little Chef had been closed, only to be told that the Chairman had insisted on eating there. But I think BRAISE is a totally unfair clue, although the crossers were kind. I constructed RIPARIAN and have always wondered what it meant. I’ve never wondered what ANOA meant before but I could construct nothing else. COD to KIND-HEARTEDNESS. In many respects, this was a great puzzle, but I have my reservations (at a posh restaurant naturally!) Thank you V and setter.

    Edited at 2021-10-18 06:49 am (UTC)

    1. Yes but no but, John!
      Not all us gastronomes are toffs! The much unloved Michael Winner and the much loved Keith Waterhouse, par example. Everyone should read KW’s delightfully witty, ‘The Theory and Practice of Lunch’ His sole hobby, as listed in ‘Who’s Who’, was ‘Lunch’!

      We recently had the IVY now BRAY’S whatever next!? Harry Ramsden’s or Rules, two of my favourites? Bring it on!

      Edited at 2021-10-18 07:39 am (UTC)

      1. I have to confess to having eaten at The Waterside accompanied by Mrs BW in the days when by position I became a provisional member of the Toffocracy. I wasn’t paying, I’m pleased to say. Mrs BW is both a terrific cook and a lover of fine food, and she thought both the food and the ambience were excellent. As she watched me wolfing down the pud, she said it was just like giving a donkey strawberries. My membership has now sadly lapsed.

        Edited at 2021-10-18 08:01 am (UTC)

    2. I’d rate 21dn as a bit iffy rather than totally unfair, because the literal definition (cook) is straightforward and leads to an everyday word (BRAISE). Given enumeration and perhaps a checker or two, the answer should be easily gettable so that the puzzle can be completed correctly. The iffy bit is the local knowledge required to understand the wordplay.

      My idea of a totally unfair clue was 24ac in the ST puzzle blogged here yesterday.

      1. Jack, I know you loathe sports bar tennis, however… a few years ago I was wont to write to the Editor of the Times Sports Section to complain about an F1 top writer’s mistaken usage of the word duel. He stated something to the effect that – Hamilton, Vettel and Alonso were left to duel it out on last few laps! A duel is strictly between two persons, unless perhaps if the Three Musketeers are involved. But in reality a duel is between four people – ‘the firsts’ and ‘the seconds’. And the odd second has been killed on occasion, apparently! Three is off limits!

    3. I presume your novel was the inspiration for the TV show where Heston Blumenthal piloted a new menu at a branch of the Little Chef.
        1. Mr. Pootle have you seen Gordon Ramsay’s ‘Hotel Hell’? You Blumenthal at the Little Chef captures the plot succinctly. It is so …. well I usually end up behind the sofa!
  13. 17.47, not spotting (sadly) the clever wordplay for KINDHEARTEDNESS and making assumptions about SIDE and BRAISE which turned out to be justified. I would imagine in this parish, Bray is more familiar from its vicar than its gastronomy.
    Slowed by ROBE for 1d, which had O(ld) B(oy) and “dress or skirt” going for it but not much else. Slowed again by trying for a revolutionary’s CHARTER IN anagram for some part of England (close to Bray, perhaps?). Sometimes you can be too clever.
  14. Must’ve been on the wavelength, seemed one of the easiest ever. I got the two longest ones first, so was off to a flying start. POI BRAISE, where I had to guess about the wordplay, and LOI RING, of all things. Seeing that as “skirt” took longer than anything else.

    I couldn’t quite believe SAKI, but what else could it be? There’s an American author who went by that name, which would have made a better clue.

    Edited at 2021-10-18 07:40 am (UTC)

      1. Was actually born in Burma and spent the first two years in that country, until his poor mother died as a result of being charged by an Anoa! He was killed in November 1916 by a German sniper. It is said his last words were ‘Put that bloody cigarette out!”
      2. Cool, thanks! I couldn’t even remember how to spell his real name last night and it was too late and I was too sleepy to look it up. His not being used in the clue prejudiced my memory as to his nationality.
  15. 17.44. Last two in cineaste and ring. The latter pretty much a guess as I hadn’t twigged the robing aspect, so lucky start to the week.

  16. Smashed my PB with a 7.39 with a couple of crossed fingers when I pressed submit, particularly on my LOI RING.

    Feel like the archetypal flat-track bully as still struggle to even finish the trickier crosswords but I will take it and for a day at least I can feel a little bit like some of the speed merchants on here.

    Thanks vinyl and setter

  17. So I completed this early for a change in 11:44 mins.
    For the record, the Anoa is the dwarf buffalo from Sulawesi, I was once ‘stationed’ there. (All Creatures Great and Small?) My COD has to go to 1dn RING, with a tip of the hat to BRAISE. For starters I thought with Waterside and Riparian we might be in for a NINA, but Croutons and Bruschetta put an end to all of that. As noted ‘Saki’ should end with an ‘e’. Kanpai!
  18. I’m always humbled by the times you guys take. Good for the soul, I suppose. Stuck on 1ac/1d. Thought 7d was very clever, got it but couldn’t parse. FOI fined, LOI ring. Time a blushing 50 mins.
    1. Don’t forget The Times is the senior daily cryptic crossword. If you can regularly finish it, no matter how long it takes you can still look down on the hoi polloi that do the Mail, Express or the Telegraph … the red tops, we won’t even mention 🙂
      1. I distinctly remember (it was in the bleak December) you animadverting against the use of ‘the’; good to see you’re over that.
        1. You are mistaken, Kev.
          The true name of the paper is The Times, it not the Times, also therefore TfTT not TftT .. I would have been animadverting something along those lines.
          It’s my Asbergers, sorry… 🙁
  19. Keriothe – “Bruschetta refers to the bread. Just the bread. Whatever goes on top is just extra. The word bruschetta is Italian (duh), and it’s derived from the verb bruscare – to char or toast bread”!! The Cookful

    Edited at 2021-10-18 08:16 am (UTC)

    1. OED, Collins, Lexico, Chambers and every restaurant I have ever ordered BRUSCHETTA in in my life all disagree.
      1. Just as long as none of those sources, or anyone else for that matter, pronounces it “brooshetta”
        1. That’s the way I’ve always said it, Martin. You live and learn.And then forget!
          1. My Italian friend, Gianni, knows some people who would be happy to call on you to persuade you of the error of your ways….. 😀😉
    2. We just had this issue on ‘baksheesh’. The question, as K says, is what the English word, as used in the crossword, means.
      1. To be fair, the Shorter Oxford does define it as toasted ciabatta typically served with tomato. On the other hand, that must be a fairly elderly definition by now and I would be surprised to have it served without tomatoes in an English restaurant.

        Edited at 2021-10-18 11:05 am (UTC)

        1. There are over 2,000 branches of Greggs in the UK, Kevin. Your family has cleaned up!
    1. Happiness is a Gregg’s sausage roll, a vanilla slice and a can of Dandelion and Burdock.
      1. You provide lunch at Rules and I’ll be getting the Gregg’s in! Dandelion & Burdock – Wow! Ah! I see Gregg’s is a chain started August 1999, when I was back in Shanghai and heading for Bangkok, after leaving ‘Blighty’ for Hong Kong in February 1996. I was handed back to Shanghai in July 1997. I’ve been locked-down (up?) for too long! horryd
    2. Greggs started in the NE — Ian Gregg attended the same church as my family and I sort of knew his daughters who were contemporaries of mine. Very nice family and had a reputation then as an excellent employer. Not sure they had more than a handful of shops then though I’m no expert on the rise and rise of Greggs
    1. Because rep is the name of a rough material … 🙂
      “a silk, wool, rayon, or cotton fabric with a transversely corded surface ” (Collins)
  20. Fairly straightforward except for the NHO ANOA (guessed from wordplay), trying to remember the geometrist, and puzzling out the vaguely-known CINEASTE.

    Then again, had no idea what was going on with KIND-HEARTEDNESS — fortunately correct otherwise the SE corner could have been a disaster

  21. The Setter has it again! The olives, anchovies, peppers and finely chopped tomatos were added later in fashionable Rome, Paris, New York and London. Pizzette! I recommend to you Il Gatto Nero,Corso Filippo Turati, Torino. Anthony Bourdain would turn in his gravy.
    1. So what? This is an English crossword so reflects English usage. If you order BRUSCHETTA here I guarantee that you will always get toppings, a fact that is reflected in all the dictionary definitions.
      1. Ah! Is the setter Italian – Izetti perchance? That might explain his ignorance. His editor should have put him straight….and on Saki/Sake!
        1. I wouldn’t call it ignorance — probably more a case of too much knowledge. Anyway it didn’t bother me hugely (MER, M for minor) or prevent me from solving the clue.
            1. I once clued PANINIS:

              Picture rolls, sandwiches in Italy originally

              SNAP reversed, sandwiching in I, for my attempt at an &lit.

          1. My tongue was in my cheek, but we need another emoji for that. Your time was indeed remarkable! But then your are a celebrated Time Lord.
    2. Dare I say that bruschetta is the most overrated starter? No thought not. But £9.95 for a slice of bread plus the cost of electricity for toasting it and a few bits of tomato and garlic. Nice work if you can get it 🙂
  22. Found this hard, but managed to finish in under 20′.

    RING was LOI. Nho ANOA, BRAISE only thing that fitted.

    RIPARIAN laboriously constructed via the French for ‘resident’ (riverain, seen a lot on road signs ‘sauf riverains’) which has the same derivation ‘on the bank’.

    Thanks vinyl and setter.

  23. Enjoyed this, very Mondayish but some interesting words and clues.. no nhos except for the ANOA, forgiveable as it is quite a rare beast here in Kent, and in fact everywhere else except the island of CELEBES, also nho.
    1. Jerry, there was an Anoa breeding programme begun here in the UK a few years back, at London Zoo, Chester, Paignton, Scotland and Whipsnade. There are just one pair left, now in a safari park, but the location has to remain secret.
  24. 27 mins so a good time for me. I liked this crossie. A number of clues had to be worked on and were pretty clever. I did see the “KIND” bit of 7d. LOI EUCLIDEAN, as I didn’t see the anagram. Unusual for me as I’m normally grasping for them! I have eaten at the Fat Duck many moons ago, an excellent meal, (pre Blumenthal’s tenure) so BRAISE was not a problem. I did think it might be for some people though.

    Thanks v and setter.

  25. 5:00. I biffed a lot today and rushed at the end to get in under 5 minutes, taking a conscious decision not to check my answers. So I was glad not to see any pink squares.
    I just biffed BRAISE but the answer is surely obvious from the definition and checkers. The Fat Duck is one of the most famous restaurants in the world, and is often called ‘The Fat Duck at Bray’ so it seems fair game to me, but you don’t actually need the knowledge.
    MER at BRUSCHETTA: like defining a sandwich as ‘bread’.
    In 27ac I think ‘about’ is part of the definition. It’s superfluous otherwise.
      1. No. Under 5 minutes is rare for me but SNITCH tells me that I’ve done it at least 10 times.
          1. Crikey, how do you speedies do it? It takes me 5 mins to wake up, look at the grid, sharpen my pencil, re-look at the grid, have a sip of coffee, and then warm up for the attack. If 1ac doesn’t generally go in in seconds, I’m lost. Chapeau, as we say in France.
  26. No problems really except I was just slow. Hats off to the setter for managing to include in one crossword the Dwarf buffalo from Sulawesi with The Fat Duck in Bray.
    1. Lord Keriothe – having lived in Torino I can assure you bruschetta (autentico pane rustico) is simply toasted bread with perhaps a dash of olive oil and salt added!

      Edited at 2021-10-18 08:25 am (UTC)

      1. Not in English it isn’t. And the last time I ordered it in Italy it definitely had tomatoes on it.

        Edited at 2021-10-18 08:26 am (UTC)

  27. Mostly very straightforward, but a couple of doosras -ANOA and BRAISE – to keep one awake. The latter was my COD but it might seem a little unfair to non-Brits. I wasted precious moments trying to hammer COCOS and AESTHETE into place.

    Something about the sound of it makes “being a CINEASTE” something one would reluctantly admit to.

    Thanks to v and the setter

  28. I spent nearly a minute trying to parse RING without success. In the end I biffed it and didn’t bother checking for typos. Which resulted in me having Kind Hearted (k)nees. A quality of mine which is often admired!

  29. 14:27 Stuck on 15A for ages at the end because I had EVEN HANDED for 14D, which left me a word starting with the V for very. Having CAMP for 24A for a while didn’t help either.
  30. ….(there are three surplus letters in my heading). I entered “open-handedness” at 7D, and then realized it must be wrong when I quickly got OPEN-HANDED at 14D. Unfortunately I cocked up the correction by leaving the N of “open” in place, and failed to see it. I wasn’t happy with my time anyway (8:15 for a dead simple puzzle).

    I had no trouble with BRAISE as I read the restaurant reviews, even though I’m a steak and kidney pudding, chips, and mushy peas in a tray with gravy kind of guy.


    Edited at 2021-10-18 09:51 am (UTC)

  31. My PB very much held up by IN RE, RING, SIDE and BRAISED, all of which I had to bung in in hope rather than expectation.
  32. No trouble with Bray – a few years ago Heston Blumenthal relocated down here for a few months while his restaurant in Bray was rebuilt or redecorated or something, and became an instant celebrity. Sold off seats to his Melbourne restaurant, $550 a pop, and presumably almost as much again for wine and drinks. They sold like hotcakes – all the merchant bankers (not CRS) and stockbrokers bought them to use as rewards for clients & potential clients after someone noticed you weren’t limited in how many tickets you could buy online from one IP address – a few bots bought about 80% of the available places.
    Also heard of Greggs surprisingly, mainly in the context of “Who ate all the pies?”
    NHO anoa was easily clued, RING was the only other holdup until I put the OB in the middle, the rest was fairly straightforward.
  33. DNF, beaten by ANOA and RING, and pulled stumps at 40 minutes rather than delay getting started on the new (and last) Le Carre any longer. Otherwise, I enjoyed this and was pleased to see and parse KIND HEARTEDNESS — good clue!
  34. All complete at Shepherds Bush.

    Pleased to parse everything but NHO ANOA. Started with the two long down clues which helped with the quick time. Enjoyed EUCLIDEAN, BRAISE and RING (one I’d worked out the last two).

    Thanks setter and v.

  35. 16:20. Didn’t know — or rather didn’t think of — the criticise definition of LACE, though the answer was obvious, and thought promoted was a bit of a stretchy definition of NOURISHED. Some of the other definitions seemed slightly off-centre but on review it was all very fair.
  36. At 27 minutes only had 1dn and 12ac to complete. I had parsed 1dn but couldn’t find a word from which to remove OB until an alphabet trawl on the final letter got to G.

    Which left anoa. For the life of me I couldn’t think of a ‘rescuer of animals’ from which to remove the last letter. I realise this is a sad admission but the delight of this forum is the honesty of the comments. Eventually gave up after 35 minutes.

    My innovation of the day was to write in bellow for 5ac. I realise that it would have to have been bellows to work but it was close.

    Thanks to setter and blogger.

  37. Please could someone explain the hearted’ bit of ‘kindhearted’? (Am attempting the step up from the Quick Crossword so struggling even with ‘easy Monday’).
    1. The idea is that if you take the 12-letter string FRANK IN DEVON and then look for the central letters (or ‘heart’ of the string), you will find KIND!
  38. Paul Bunyan (lumberjack in American and Canadian folklore) had a blue ox called Babe which sometimes used to turn up in NY Times crosswords clued as an ANOA, I don’t know why. Haven’t seen her lately but I did manage to remember.

    Speaking of Oxon, I had no particular recollection of famous restaurants in Bray and thought (wrongly) that maybe it referred to the one called (annoyingly) Le Manoir Aux Quat’Saisons – why leave off the RE in quatre? It sounds as affected as a CINEASTE. 12.07

    1. Apart from the Fat Duck there is also the (far better imo) Waterside Inn, a Roux Brothers initiative.
      Le Manoir is (imo) better still and is run by a Frenchman, Raymond Blanc, and so perhaps not all that affected. He certainly isn’t.
  39. The NHO ANOA defeated me, but pleased to have thrown the towel in quickly, as would never have got it.
    NW was hardest with REPLACED late in (neither REP or LACED made much sense, still don’t)

    RING was slow to see, as I had been trying OB at the start as in oblong, obtain etc.

    KIND HEARTED was too clever for me to parse. Thanks for showing how it worked. CINEASTE was easier than it should have been with “INEAST” sitting right there. I’m happy to guess that CE must equal “class”. No more obscure than OS = outsized? Really, surely XL is used everywhere now.

    I was actually born in Bray, before the swanky restaurants turned up, and the Hinds Head was as good as it got.

  40. 26/29 for a DNF. Didn’t get ring, the re out of in re, NHO and couldn’t get or biff cineaste. Did not parse ring, replaced, Euclidean or braise. Quite pleased with my effort nonetheless. Enjoyed all the clues but would never have got the ones I didn’t get. Ever. Thanks, V, and setter.
  41. A disappointing DNF in around 20 mins. I was off to a quick start and had hopes of a PB but ground to a halt with cineaste, anoa and replaced. I pondered An AR(K) for a long time without making the leap to its builder. I also had replaced for some time but couldn’t see how it parsed, rep and laced didn’t seem quite right though they had to be. In the end submitted to find I had a pink square for a typo at NN RE.
  42. Well, a finish to start the week, for which I am grateful, but still without needing to use any units smaller than hours. Had quite a bit of fun trying to get 15ac to start with a V, having put Even Handed (no idea) for 14d. Loi Cineaste went in with fingers crossed, as I couldn’t see how it parsed. I still have no idea how side and ostentatiousness are synonyms, but everybody seems happy with it and I don’t think it’s going to trouble me again. On the other hand, I did manage to parse Anoa, Ring and Kind Heartedness, so there is some hope. Invariant
    1. It’s arguably a bit of a stretch but the usual dictionaries have variously ‘boastful or pretentious manner’, ‘insolence, arrogance, or pretentiousness’ and ‘a pretentious air, arrogance.’
      1. My issue was more that I couldn’t see what ‘side’ had to do with pretentious etc, but apparently Mrs Invariant has come across it used in that way, so it seems it’s just me! Thanks.
        1. The expression I have used (and my parents would have more frequently) is “he has no side to him”, meaning he not pretentious or ostentatious. I can’t remember them using it of somebody who does have a side to them.
  43. Done in 20 minutes before dashing off to make my golf tee time, with RING pencilled in but not understood. Somewhere on the front nine the PDM came to me. Nice puzzle today. ANOA was a new animal for me. RIPARIAN remembered from Hyacinth Bouquet’s riparian feasts.
  44. 42 minutes, but the last 10 or so needed to find DHOTI to confirm that BRAISE was really the answer to 21 dn. I really had to guess that Bray was the location of a famous restaurant and that it was on the Thames. So a MER for that (or rather a MEH, since I am rhotic) but many others as well: REP, SIDE, LACED for “criticised”, ACT for “fake”, RING for “skirt”, none of them wrong but all seeming a bit stretched. Which would be okay in the odd clue, but if it occurs all over the place gets to be a bit irritating. COD to KIND-HEARTED, of course, which is a good thought to end on.
  45. Was heading for an under tenner, but slowed right down at about minute 6. Misread 11 ac and put in Felon, which would have worked if the clue had been in the past tense. Tempted by Raki, sted Saki, but held firm. We sang The Vicar of Bray at prep school in Ireland in the early 70s. Odd, because the Irish town of Bray was just down the road.

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