i Cryptic Crossword 3513 Quaiteaux

May 12, 2022

Difficulty rating (out of five): 🌟

Quaiteaux is one of those setters who appears that irregularly that you never know what to expect, and for some reason I expected this to be fairly difficult, thus bringing the run of easier Thursdays to a close. As it turns out, this was a pretty straightforward offering, surprisingly so for a Saturday reprint. Granted, there were a few that went in unparsed, even if the answers were pretty obvious, notably the cheese and 1d, and there were a few tricky looking constructions, but overall there was nothing here that was too difficult, and much to admire, a lot of invention being the flip side of the coin. Outside of the COD, in particular I liked 13/14 and the “Lower numbers”, the latter being as exact and concise as you would like, and worthy of Dac.

But the COD itself? It has to be the aforementioned 16ac – “Cheese cut & grated (8)”.

All the answers and parsing of the clues can be found in Fifteensquared’s blog from March 2018:


11 Responses to “i Cryptic Crossword 3513 Quaiteaux”

  1. Cornick said

    Very much agreed on all points – even if some on Fifteensquared did find it tricky.
    Oh, and happy birthday 🙂

  2. Saboteur said

    I found this a little tougher than that – mainly because I struggled to get onto the wavelength of an unfamiliar setter. Enjoyed it though.

    Last in was PLAYING UP, where the word-play eluded me.

    I loved PARMESAN, when I eventually saw how it worked, and also NETHER.

  3. thebargee said

    Interesting that our blogger mentions Dac, I felt that the whole puzzle was somewhat Dac-esque and thoroughly enjoyable to boot. Even though most of the answers dropped in without too much trouble, there was so much to admire in the clueing.

    Overall this was 2/3* for me because I had to check 8dn and was completely baffled by the wordplay for 13dn and 27/28ac. Favourites were THREE, NETHER and PARMESAN.

  4. tonnelier said

    I was very surprised by the 1* rating. There was a great deal going on in this puzzle which for me placed it firmly in the *** class. NETHER was my favourite clue; I’ve also ticked 3, 15 and 16, and been impressed/amused by several others.

    Very enjoyable indeed. Is the rather odd pseudonym just a very flowery way of spelling Cato, or am I missing something?

    • Cornick said

      I bet you’re right Tonnelier.
      Noms de plume are often multi-layered, so Cato might have a personal significance(?) then there’s something of a tradition of monikers having an X, Q or Z in them.

      • Cornick said

        Reading bags of silly speculation about Quaiteaux’ identity on the other side, all I can reliably see is she’s a she.
        Kate O. perhaps?

      • jonofwales said

        Her real name is Regina Lusca. “Linguist. Cyclist. Horse watcher”.

  5. imsewell said

    Very enjoyable puzzle. Some original, to me anyway, constructions. Thought the “lack of amplification” clue was great. Still dont get 13d , 23a or the cheese one. Going to 15×15 now to get enlightenment.

  6. Borodin said

    Definitely more than 1* for me: 2* at least, possibly 3. But an enjoyable challenge and I’ll go with PARMESAN for CoD.

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