on July 15, 2013
A blazing hot summer's day - actually it really was especially for Ireland as it was about 28degrees celsius, an unusual event. So I wanted to head out of Sligo town for a bit and decided Strandhill would be my choice for the afternoon. Now it was a Friday afternoon and the village was busy as it sits right on the beach, but we found a parking spot fairly quickly. Looking at Shells, which is at the car park at the seafront, it looked really busy as all the outside tables were full, but the main lunch must have been over as there were several tables inside, which was actually preferable as it cooler. It is really quite a funky little cafe with a seaside theme in a vintage kind of style, and despite being busy it was quite a chilled place.The big problem was that way too many things on the menu sounded really good, and we had a real difficult in choosing. In the end given the hot day we decided salad sounded perfect and each ordered a different one, my friend had the chicken one while I had the seasonal special. The waitress was very friendly and helpful. I ordered the homemade lemonade- which the only disappointment was that it came in one of those disposable plastic cups with a lid- I would have preferred a glass, but otherwise it was good, cold and just enough of a lemon kick but sweet at the same time. This is not a place for a quick lunch, this place will take time, but its a place to come hang out, relax and chat. The salads we got were great. I had the seasonal one with strawberries, goats cheese and a balsamic dressing. My friend thought it sounded too weird to order so had the chicken salad which she enjoyed. But I really loved my one with the strawberries, it was fresh and different. Along with the salad came two thick slices of brown soda bread, which is made on the premises, and was soft and had added seeds for some interesting texture. It was all so good. The only problem was that I didn't have room for coffee and some of the delicious goodies that were on display on the counter.There is a small shop next door selling some of their food, and other nice foodie goodies. They also have produced a cookbook, which I am seriously tempted to purchase. The shop also a small selection of interesting knickknacks and things I could have bought as pressies.I am in Sligo fairly regularly but I think I have found a new favourite! This cafe is small, but I loved the relaxed atmosphere which fits its location at the sea, and the food was fab. I will be back whether for breakfast, lunch or coffee.
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