DT 30086 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 30086

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30086

Hints and tips by pommers

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

¡Hola a todos!  Bet you weren’t expecting me again so soon!  The 2Kiwis are otherwise engaged today so I’m afraid you’ll just have to put up with me again as stand-in.  Sorry and all that but I’m pretty sure the Kiwis will be back next week.

A pretty good puzzle today from the Wednesday Wizard.  A tad tricky in places but overall not a brain bender.  Not many anagrams so I’m afraid you’ll have to do it the hard way.

As usual the ones I liked most are in blue.  The definitions are underlined in the clues and the answers are under the “click here” buttons so don’t click on them unless you really want to see the answer.  Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a           Food concepts that go beyond the amateur? (10)
PROVISIONS:  If the answer were split (3,7) you would have a phrase meaning professional concepts or views.

6a           Pack abandoning wife for quiet break (4)
STOP:  Take a word for to pack, on a boat perhaps, and remove the W  and replace with a P (abandoning Wife for quiet).

10a         Flower cult essentially adopted by crown (5)
TULIP:  The middle two letters (essentially) from cULt are inserted into (adopted by) a word meaning crown as in top.

11a         Cutting business for profit (9)
TAILORING:  Cryptic definition of a business that relies on cutting cloth to make a profit.

12a         Nurse must stock them occasionally for supplier (7)
CATERER:  Start with another word for a nurse and insert (must stock) TE (ThEm occasionally).

13a         Offspring must eat lean dairy product (7)
STILTON: Take your male offspring and insert (must eat) a word meaning lean or incline.

14a         Compensating factors of money set aside during thanksgiving? The other way round! (6,6)
SAVING GRACES:  “The other way round” means that these compensating factors are not what the clue actually says  but thanksgiving inserted into (during) some money set aside.  So insert some thanksgiving, before a meal perhaps, into some money set aside or nest-egg.

18a         Cold call English luminary — how embarrassing! (12)
CRINGEWORTHY:  C(old) followed by a word for call, by telephone perhaps, then an E(nglish) and finally a word for a luminary.

21a         Hints about line crossed during exercise drinks (7)
TIPPLES:  Put an L(ine) into two letters for exercise and around it (about) put another word for hints or clues.  Not sure what the word crossed brings to this clue.

23a         Blessing meat after change of starter (7)
BENISON:  Take some meat, from a deer, and change the first letter (change of starter).  Trouble with this sort of clue is that it gives no hint as to what the meat is or what the letter must be changed to so if you don’t know the answer you have to guess a meat and then go through all twenty five possibilities to get one that works.

24a         No idea about boy returning with voice so affected (9)
ADENOIDAL:  Anagram (about) of NO IDEA and then another word for a boy reversed (returning).

25a         Instruments that may be pointed when cycling? (5)
HARPS:  Take a word meaning pointed and move the first letter to the end (cycling).  I think I may have used this picture before.

26a         Touch and run (4)
DASH:  Double definition.  Touch as in a small amount.

27a         Drama created by inspector in new exposure (7,3)
OEDIPUS REX:  This drama was written by Sophocles in 430BC.  It’s an anagram (new) of EXPOSURE with the two letters for detective inspector inserted (in).


1d           Revolutionary outbreak sees school place taking precedence (6)
PUTSCH:  Take an abbreviation of school and before it (taking precedence) put a word meaning to place or position.

2d           Young fliers terribly slow to welcome jets without wings (6)
OWLETS:  Make an anagram (terribly) of SLOW and insert (to welcome) ET (jETs without wings).

3d           Rancour working in support of royal capacity (8,6)
IMPERIAL GALLON:  Take another word for rancour and a word meaning working, as in not turned off,  and put them after (in support of in a down clue) a synonym of royal.

4d           Question one aspect under adjustment of rent (9)
INTERVIEWListen very carefully . . .  Start with the letter that looks like number one.  After that you need an anagram (adjustment of) of RENT and after that (under in a down clue) you need another word for an aspect.  Phew!

5d           Trouble in the outskirts of Nantes resulting in arrests (5)
NAILS:  The outskirts of Nantes are NS so into that you need to put a word for trouble.

7d           Work of art needing expedition on credit reportedly? (8)
TRIPTYCH:  Start with an expedition or journey and then some letters which aren’t a word but if pronounced would sound like (reportedly) some credit or hire purchase.

8d           New Age Spain convert? (8)
PAGANISE:  Anagram (new) of AGE SPAIN.

9d           How sanctimonious setter might be compared to you! (6-4-4)
HOLIER THAN THOU:  Cryptic definition of a phrase meaning sanctimonious or self-righteous.

15d         US conscript must pack a coarse biscuit (9)
GARIBALDI: Take two letters for a US conscript and insert the A from the clue and a word meaning coarse or bawdy to get a squashed fly biscuit.

16d         Nation may be secure after cost is worked out (8)
SCOTLAND:  Anagram (is worked out) of COST followed by (after) a word meaning to secure or obtain.

17d         Lack of vitality is not so much about one elected member (northern) (8)
LIMPNESS: A word meaning not so much is placed around (about) an I (one), two letters for an elected member of parliament and an N(orthern).

19d         You’re texting about certain person of interest? (6)
USURER:  This is a person of interest because he charges extortionate rates of interest.  Take two letters you might use for “you are” in a text message and put them around (about) a word meaning certain.

20d         Places of learning once available to all (6)
UNISEX:  Abbreviation of some places of learning, don’t forget it’s plural, and then two letters for once or in the past which usually represent a spouse once.

22d         Team covering left edge (5)
SIDLE:  Edge as in move slowly.  Take another word for a team and place around (covering) an L(eft).

On my podium today are 1a and 4d but on the top step is 19d for its slightly off-the-wall definition.

Quick crossword pun:

FORCE     +     HEIGHT     =     FORESIGHT

59 comments on “DT 30086

  1. Excellent puzzle, with a fair bit of lateral thinking required and incorporating a couple of new words, both fairly clued, as was the drama Slow to start but a fast finish with 1a&d holding out longest, the latter stretching the boundary of a back-pager.
    I particularly liked 18a&20d but my favourite was the super 19d.
    Many thanks to Jay and Pommers, nice to see you again sir!

  2. I got 22d wrong initially, albeit with all the correct letters present and an answer that I felt fitted the clue!
    It wasn’t until I got 24a that I realised my mistake.
    Last to go was 1d, new word to me, but the only one that fitted the clue. Good fun puzzle, particularly enjoyed 14 and 27a.

  3. I found this pleasingly challenging in places, and that certainly upped the enjoyment level. Like SL, 19d was easily my clue of the day ahead of 1a.

    My thanks to Jay for the fun, and to super sub pommers.

  4. A very enjoyable puzzle providing exercise for the little grey cells – many thanks to Jay and pommers.
    I’ve selected 1d, 19d and 20d for my podium.

  5. I too initially found this pretty tricky but picked up speed for an unaided (well sort of) finish in just over *** time. The dreaded incorrect cross came up at completion so pored through it for a fat fingered input typo & reading back realised I’d bunged in the wrong instruments at 25a (which had nowt to do with the wordplay of course). Lots of ticks for me – 13,18&27a plus 1,7,19&20d. Agree with Stephen that top spot goes to the excellent surface read at 19d. Toughie looks chewy again.
    Thanks to Jay & to Pommers for filling in for 2Ks

    1. I managed to take some time last night to have a go at this mid-week challenge! Found it really tough and was first 😁 when completing, only then to be 😟 when I got the dreaded ‘incorrect’!
      After much checking ‘n re-checking I tried the actual answer for 25A instead of the more obvious (so I thought…🙄) answer with the pointy things on bulls that are also an instrument section in an orchestra!
      Anyway, as soon as the ‘right’ answer was in, of course the friendly ‘all correct’ came up…but I simply couldn’t parse why this was correct….😱
      …anyway, very many thanks to Pommers for explaining in simple terms here the ‘Doh’ moment for me today!
      Thanks Jay for the challenge (and a wee bit of rough sleep 😜) and to Pommers for another educamation!!

  6. 4*/4.5*. I’ll go along with the consensus that this was tougher than usual for a Jay Wednesday but as enjoyable as ever with 1a, 4d & 19d making onto my podium. 23a was a new word for me.

    Many thanks to Jay and to pommers for standing in at short notice.

  7. Well if Sue finds a puzzle on the tricky side then we know we are in for a challenging ride. I stared in despair for a few moments, found the answer to 18a and worked my way outwards. My toast had long been consumed before I added in 1a and 1d to complete this devilish fellow.

    Thanks to Jay and The Ace From Alicante

  8. Took a while to get a toe hold but once started became a steady if tricky solve.
    15a favourite.
    Ta to all.

  9. A bit slow to start but fast and lark-happy to finish this terrific Jay gem. Like others, I found 19d chuckle-worthy, but 27a, 1a, 1d, & 14a all huddle together for the big prizes, with 23a & 20d sharing the Clarkie for special honours. Loved this one. Thanks to pommers and to Jay. 2.5* / 5*

    A demon of a Toughie for me today, but almost there….

    Re 8d: has anyone else read Julian Barnes’s new novel, Elizabeth Finch? Julian & Julian the Apostate! Very strange book but worth the effort.

  10. In simple terms, Jay taking the day off and sending Logman to do the work – ***/****.

    Candidates for favourite – 13a, 18a, 3d, 7d, 17d, and 19d – and the winner is 13a – I replenished my stocks last Friday and it was 30% off because it was a day before the ‘best before date.’ How can it have a best before date, more like a best after date for me?

    Thanks to Jay and to pommers – I hope that Colin’s recovery is proceeding well.

  11. I reckon our setter had pinched a few words from his Logman stock for this one but it was still enjoyable to solve. I see that those biscuits are getting another run for their money – I bought a packet after our recent discussion about them!
    Top two for me were 1&18a.

    Thanks to Jay and to pommers for covering the 2Ks slot – I do hope that Colin is well on the mend.

  12. This took a bit of figuring out but I did eventually make it “by my own self”. Slightly lacking in lighter moments however there are some clever clues of which I make 19d my Fav. Stupidly 6a was unparsed bung-in. Thank you Jay and pommers. Best get well wishes Colin.

  13. I think this is punishment for yesterdays great puzzle. It was tricky, clumsy and overly verbose in my opinion. It also included a weird word in 23a and a very clumsy one in 8d.
    One of those puzzles where you feel satisfaction in completing without much enjoyment.
    Thx for the hints esp for explaining my answers to 12a and 6a

    1. At the risk of upsetting you Brian, 23a is quite common in churchy circles. It makes up for all the crickety ones which stump me! I agree with you about the verbosity but it was all cogent to the plot!

    2. Sorry Brian and DG – I’m no good at either ‘churchy stuff’ nor ‘crickety clues’
      Perhaps someone could find anything I’m good at . . .

  14. A rather tricky Jay p and I, lije many others, rok a while to find a foothold but as the checkers went in, things speeded up. It was full of wily misdirection with a good variety of clu eypes and included some GK so I enjoyed it. Favourites were the 7d homophone, the 24a and 19dlego clues, the 0lay at 27a and the 16d geographical clue. Thanks to Jay and to Pommers for doing a second set of hints.

  15. Thought I’d strayed into the Toughie page by accident. Felt quite pleased that I managed around 85% before resorting to the hints. Thanks to Pommers for the explanations:)

  16. Struggled a bit with this, but the day is always made brighter with a bit of Tom Lehrer!

    Thanks Pommers (and setter)

  17. A really good puzzle, this. Great clues, a toughish challenge an very enjoyable. I’ve ticked several and will mention 13a. 4*/4.5*.

    *That popular biscuit is becoming something of a chestnut!

    1. *I’m a bit disappointed with this week’s Puzzles Newsletter, which is mostly a marketing exercise for the brand new DT puzzles website. The monthly clue-writing competition report has been reduced to just namimg the top three winners – though I doubt my effort would have got any mention: Nigel Haver’s drink? (8)

  18. Tricky and, as MP would say, checkers were my friends. Got there in the end but no particular favourites.
    Thanks to Jay and pommers

  19. I thought at first this was going to be a stinker and twelve word clues were confusing me. But it gradually fell into place and I put daisies by 1,13,18 and 24a and 3,7d but 27a was the winner. Many thanks to the setter and to Pommers. I’ve just had a call from the dentist who wants to check up on me this afternoon – isn’t that sweet! Got to drive into Cambridge though. ☹️Oh, I needed help for 6a – stumped by a four letter word!

  20. Sorry didn’t enjoy this 😒 I don’t think the Compiler was Jay 🤔 *****/** Favourites were 18a and 15d Thanks to pommers and to the Compiler

  21. Challenging, but very enjoyable. Ticks all over the place, but 23a probably wins it for me.
    I was another who initially bunged in the wrong instruments at 25a.
    Greetings from beautiful Vienna, where the current Mrs Shabbo and I are enjoying a short city break.

  22. I managed just six in bed this morning. Came back to it later and filled it in slowly and steadily. The 1d 1a combo last two in. If CS thought it was tricky then it must be. Thanks to the setter and Pommers. Hope the dentist was gentle DG!

    1. It’s as well we knew you were referring to crossword clues, Manders, otherwise your first sentence could have carried a totally different message!

  23. Pleasingly tricky for someone like me, and an enjoyable puzzle. With Donnybrook on the Toughie it had to be Jay here, and we were in expert hands all the way, if I may say. **/****.

  24. I agree that Jay took the day off and sent in Logman for this puzzle. Yikes!
    Found this a tough one with three new words for me.
    3.5*/4* today despite the head scratching and grey cell over usage.

    Favourites include 1a, 13a, 18a, 9d & 15d — with winner 13a but closely followed by 18a

    New words for me in 23a, 1d & 7d

    Thanks to Logman (Jay) & pommers

  25. A Jay? to behold.
    So elegantly put together.
    1,14 and 18a and 7 and 20d stand out as competitors in a very strong field.
    Winner, just, 7d.
    So, **/*****.
    Many thanks to the setter and pommers.

  26. :phew: That was tough!
    I found this much harder than a usual Jay – there were some a few answers that I would never have got without either quite a few checkers or some hints.
    I got the the first part of 18a quite quickly but the last one took its time.
    23a was one of those better to wait for the first letter otherwise I’d got it wrong, and a bit crucial to the rest of that corner.
    Enough or I’ll go on for too long, I think.
    No particular favourite – they’re all pretty good!
    Thanks to Jay and to pommers, and hello to Colin (and to Carol too or she’ll feel left out!)

  27. Wonderfully crafted puzzle that felt more challenging that the Wednesday norm.

    The best bits in my very enjoyable solve came right at the end, with 19d and 20d topping my list of favourites.

    Thank you Jay and pommers.

  28. Thanks to Jay and to Pommers for the review and hints. A very difficult puzzle, might as well have been a Toughie. Needed 11 hints to finish. Not much fun. Was 5* / 2* for me.

  29. Not much fun for me. Needed a lot of hints even for some I had mentally put in as I couldn’t for the life of me parse them. So many thanks to Pommers for ensuring I knew some thoughts were right and providing answers where thought was totally absent.

    Thanks to Jay for reminding me to book that course on lateral thinking.

  30. Bit late today,certainly more difficult than usual ,quite a few bung ins then find the parsing!
    Last in was 8a took a while to unravel the anagram.
    Going for a ****/****.
    Favourite was 23a followed by 27a which was toughie material.
    Thanks to Pommers, you have used the picture of 25a before-but no shame in that, rather fetching I thought.

  31. A dnf thanks to 1d. Even if I had worked out the word I would have dismissed it as being wrong.

    New words for me in 23a and 7d required Google to confirm.

    Even with all the checkers, 11a took me ages to solve.

    Quite a challenge, but satisfying to have nearly completed.

    Thanks to all.

  32. Thanks for standing in for us again Pommers. Promise that we will be back in the blogging chair next Wednesday.
    Recovery from the heart incident is going smoothly and well and expect to be back to doing things like driving soon. The visit to the hospital yesterday that prompted us to ask Pommers again was for the eye clinic and nothing to do with last week’s adventures.
    It was a real change for us to sit down and solve a good Wednesday puzzle like this one without having to think “How would we write a hint for this.” A satisfying level of challenge and a pleasure to solve.
    Thanks Jay and Pommers.

    1. Good to hear good news from you, Colin! I noticed in the newspaper here that the predicted low temperature in Auckland was 39 F today. Is it that chilly where you are? It was 95 F in Charleston yesterday, a bit too steamy for September.

      1. Thanks for the kind thoughts.
        Almost frosty here the last couple of mornings. Winter had a parting gift for the country before moving aside for Spring. We had to go to a conversion chart to understand the temperatures you quoted. We went to metric measurements in NZ in the 1960s.

      2. The summer here continues to be crazy. It was 37°C (99°F) this afternoon and we’re a week into September!

    2. Glad to here things are going well.

      I had a consult with an ophthalmologist yesterday and apparantly I’ve started developing cataracts in both eyes and have some sort of membrane growing across the retina in my right eye. Not affecting my vision at all yet but she wants another look in four months. The joys of growing old!

  33. Started off very slowly but finished at a Senf like gallop despite a couple of new words. Favour p was 18a. Thanks to Jay and Pommers.

  34. This verged on **** difficulty for me because of some new words eg 7d and 23a but great fun nonetheless thank you Pommers for the tips and Jay for the intellect!

  35. As with yesterday’s Toughie I appear to have had Lady Fortune on my shoulder when I tackled this wonderful puzzle last evening – a glance at the NW revealed no instant answers but 18a was a write-in, and I progressed smoothly in an AC direction from there. Loved the clues and thought everything – even the meat – very fair.

    Hon Mentions to 16a, 1d, 7d, 15d and 19d, but I could easily double that list.

    2* / 4*

    Many thanks to Jay and to Pommers.

  36. 3.5*/4.0*…enjoyed the challenge of this one….
    liked 18A ” Cold call English luminary — how embarrassing! (12)”

Comments are closed.