The Lakeland Pedlar (Keswick)

Less of a review, more of an endorsement for a sensibly priced vegetarian cafe I'd totally recommend.

Unfortunately it's far, far away.

Despite having once lived in Scotland, when I first travelled up to Cumbria from The Midlands in '06 it felt like I'd passed the edge of the earth and kept going. I quickly got used to the journey after a few visits however and it's since become one of my favourite parts of the country.

The Lakeland Pedlar is a no frills type cafe in Keswick; a short stroll from Derwent Water and some rather stunning views. I've probably been about 8 times over the years and it's pretty much a given that I'll end up there each time I visit.

Service is fast! Not suspiciously fast, but they've obviously got a pot of chilli on the go etc and plate up to order. Pricing is reasonable and portion sizes decent. It's located underneath a bike shop so probably picks up trade from cyclists as well as vegetarians (there's a large carpark next door for us unfit people).

It seems we arrived at just the right time for a choice of tables for Saturday lunch; people were queuing by the time we left. We ordered their nachos:

which could possibly be improved to the standards of Chesters with the inclusion of sour cream/guacamole/melty cheese, but is pretty decent all the same. We also had a 3 bean chilli wrap, which comes with a variety of salads:

Not being the world's greatest fan of salad, it's always refreshing to see a mixture of different types (pasta/couscous etc) rather than a few leaves.

Their garlic bread (ciabatta) is possibly the best in the UK (better than Terre-a-Terre - cheaper too):

Their chocolate cake IS the best I've tasted from a shop (better than Infinity) and the inclusion of icecream is welcome too (no prizes for guesses of which brand). The icing could be improved with use of this fudge icing, but again I'm picking now.

I generally find it difficult to get excited by flapjack, but I'm informed that it was very good.

Total bill was less than £25.

A welcomed difference from many vegetarian places is that they've generally a choice of desserts. They'd several cakes available when we were there. From memory their crumble isn't so great though (not to my taste).

I'm not used to this overly positive reviewing malarky - I'll write a scathing one about somewhere else soon, I promise.


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