You can always rely on Ardardan Estate for a nice wee visit to the countryside. You can look at the farm animals (a big hit with kids, I’m sure), wander round the farm shop and garden nursery, and – most importantly – have a bite to eat in the bustling tearoom. As is often the case, on our most recent visit we had to wait for a table as the tearoom and shop were rather busy. It’s no issue however, as the pleasant staff will call your name when your table is ready, leaving you to peruse the goodies in the adjoining shop.
After a 20 minute wait, mum and I were shown to a table dangerously near the cake display and left to make our decisions. We chose two toasties – the Brie, Bacon and Cranberry and the July Special – and shared so that we could both have a taste of each. The Brie, Bacon and Cranberry is one of mum’s favourites, with the sweet, sharp cranberry offsetting the creamy cheese and salty bacon. The July Toastie, however, certainly put in a bid for the top spot. Filled with peppery haggis and creamy mozzarella, we couldn’t quite taste the sweet chilli that was supposed to accompany it, but it was very tasty without it!
Sitting so near the cakes was never going to end well, but – in a bid to be slightly less unhealthy – we decided just to share a slice of Lemon Meringue Pie. The tart lemon filling was lovely, and though I could have done with a crispier base it was still pretty good overall.
While the food was as good as it usually is, we did have a little niggle with the service. After ordering our toasties we waited nearly half an hour before receiving them, despite others around us getting theirs. I believe this was a genuine accident, perhaps caused by a breakdown in communication, but it is something they should be wary of.
Aside from a little service issue, Ardardan maintained its popularity and we will no doubt be back sometime in the not too distant future.