CaleDonia Coffeehouse, Bute
You'll have noticed that I haven't posted as much recently - this is because I've been training for the Women's Ride the Night cycling event in Edinburgh. This has meant I've had less time for feasting but it's this weekend so I might well need to do quite a bit of eating next week to make up for all that energy that I'll burn!
However, I have managed to have lunch with some of the girls from work in Rothesay this week and it was an absolute pleasure to try out CaleDonia Coffeehouse & Bistro. I'd heard about this cafe quite a lot and various people had recommended it to me, so a trip was long overdue.
We arrived nice and early, at about midday, for lunch. There were no other customers at that point, so we had a choice of tables and were placed in the middle of the cafe, where we were able to take in that beautiful view. The cafe is located in Port Bannatyne, a small village about a 10 minute drive out of the town of Rothesay, on the Isle of Bute.
The cafe offers a good range of lunch-time options as you can see from the menu below, from light bites to more substantial main courses. One of my friends ordered a breakfast item so it looks like they're available for longer throughout the day and not for a short, limited period of time only. I was really swithering with what to choose as there's a lot on here that appeals to me! However, the lure of the specials board was too great and I decided on the fish cake with salad. The specials board also included two freshly made soups, a supreme of chicken and pan-fried salmon, among other things.
There's also a broad range of drinks options, so between us we had a cappuccino, a fruity smoothie, and a diet coke. The smoothie was a mix of red berries and there was the option of having either orange or apple juice as the base. As someone who is allergic to oranges, it's great to see that there are options available, and how delicious does that look?!
We waited quite a bit of time between the drinks being served and the food arriving, our server checked that we were ready for it before she brought it over, and we weren't disappointed. All of the dishes looked delicious and were really well presented. The portions were generous too - we each had a large plate and there was plenty on them all.
My fishcake was perfectly cooked - it was crispy on the outside with a lovely soft interior, and it came with a lovely heap of salad, as well as a little pot of melted butter and what looked to be a sweet Thai chilli sauce. Fortunately our server told me that it was a ginger and lime dipping sauce so I passed it onto my friend as she'd ordered a salmon and prawn salad, and it would pair perfectly with that! Sadly, I'm also allergic to ginger and given how sick it makes me, it's not worth risking it!
The cafe has a really nice, relaxed ambience - the decor is fresh and light, with a palette of muted pale greens and white, which gives calm, airy feel to the cafe. In the front of the cafe, there are two large recessed windows and you can perch on a stool at the benches in the window if you want to gaze at that view while you sip your cuppa.
The cafe was busying up as we were finishing, with a table of six and another of four arriving for lunch. The sandwich board on the street indicates the broad range of options that CaleDonia offers to its visitors, from vegan and gluten free options, to artisan coffee and the option to take-away if you need to. Plus, it's dog friendly!
I'll definitely be back as there's lots on offer to try, and if I was staying over night, then I'll be popping in here for some french toast for breakfast! Might also be an idea to get some take-away so I have something interesting for lunch at work...