There aren't many places to eat out in the Hebrides, but at the port of Leverburgh on the island of Harris, the Butty Bus meets the ferry from Berneray each day. (Well, apart from Sundays, but that's another story.)
We'd caught the early morning ferry so we were more than ready for breakfast and decided to investigate. After all, the idea is cute, and beautifully executed by the (ex-pat English) owner-manager-chef; as well as takeaway food, a few bar stools provide seating in a bright, airy space with great views of the surrounding landscape.
As a vegetarian, however, the initial outlook wasn't promising. The menu features meaty all-day-breakfast basics like bacon rolls and sausage butties... and the owner told me that he's refused to serve vegetarians before now!
You'd think that would turn me against the place, but I gave him the chance to explain and I'm glad I did.
You see, it turns out that one of his regular customers is veggie, and has explained that he can't use his normal grill (where he cooks the meat) to prepare vegetarian food. He keeps a seperate 'veggie' pan under the counter, and is happy to make sandwiches from the ingredients he has in stock (including egg, mushrooms, tomatoes, onions) - but it takes time and space, and rather than cutting corners, he'll refuse to serve veggie food if the cafe's too busy for him to get out the extra pan.
I'm quite impressed by that, really.
In the end I had a roll with fried mushrooms & tomatoes, and a nice cup of coffee. Simple but flavourful food (clearly high-quality, fresh ingredients), and we also had a great chat with the owner - it's well worth dropping in for a coffee just to get his perspective on the island where he's chosen to live out his retirement (if you can call this retiring!)
|Address:||The Ferry Terminal Car Park at Leverburgh, Harris|
|Style:||Coffee & sandwiches|
|Date Visited:||29 June 2009|