40 North

I would like to share with you all a fantastic place I discovered on my recent travels to the Outer Hebrides.

I visited my best friend who lives on the stunning Isle of Lewis, in a small city called Stornoway. On my final day, we decided to stop for lunch at a local deli/restaurant named 40 North just outside of the town centre. We came on good faith, a colleague of my friend told us she drives 20 miles out of her way just to visit 40 North.

Pulling into the car park, we discovered that the little deli is actually more of a picnic-cafe. You are invited to choose as much or as little as you want, from the freshly prepared food of the day, which is then priced according to item. When we visited, our options were ; Indian spice chicken breasts, honey glazed chicken breasts, smoked duck breasts, Mediterranean-style potatoes with fried onions, pakoras, quiche, beef sausages, smoked salmon, mini beef Wellingtons with cheesy mash and Mediterranean style olives and peppers in oil. I have saved extra sentence space for the tart that I fell In love with. A light filo base, with layers of chicken, balsamic onions, mozzarella, Parmesan, peppers and oregano. My mouth died of a thousand tiny food orgasms.

I chose half an Indian chicken breast, half a duck breasts, a piece of the tart, two pakoras and some potatoes. It cost me about £10 for the lot, which was extremely good value, as portion control is not strictly enforced here.

The owner told us she makes everything fresh on the premises, including the sausages which are made from her own beef. I love this idea, particularly as you can see the pigs, chickens and ducks roaming free behind the deli. I know some might find this off-putting but I like knowing where my food has been before I put it in my mouth.

It’s a novel idea, of choosing from a small selection, as much or as little as you want and paying accordingly. It worked well for me, considering I often have eyes that routinely tell my stomach ‘come on, you can do it, more, more!’

Plus, the setting. There is nothing more satisfying than sitting on a picnic bench, surrounded by animals and tartan-coloured mountains.

You can visit the website of 40 North here : www.40northfoods.co.uk

To finish, a little drop of music that will always remind me of driving through the island: http://youtu.be/9b4F_ppjnKU

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