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Scone Spy: Our cafe critic checks out The Buttercup Cafe in Doune

© SYSTEMScones at the Buttercup cafe
Scones at the Buttercup cafe

“I only went out for a walk, and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in.”

I wish I could pretend to be the original author of this profound quote but John Muir, the famous Scottish-born naturalist, captured beautifully a precise feeling of being enthralled by nature.

My walk took me to the glorious rolling hills behind Doune in Perthshire. It was a gloriously sunny day, which, after the long, dreary winter, was balm for the soul. The blue sky was dotted with red kite (the birds, not the children’s toys), clearly attracted to the nearby Argaty Red Kite Centre for feeding time.

So fascinated was I by the beautiful natural world, that I completely lost track of time. By now, while my mind was focused on the great outdoors, my stomach was thinking about the great indoors.

The Buttercup Cafe sits in the pretty Doune main street and inside is a hive of activity.

The cafe is a small, well maintained affair, which opens up into a courtyard and additional dining room at the back. Owing to its impressive reputation for great food, it is always filled with happy customers. Thankfully, I had the foresight to book and was guided to a table in the light, bright dining room at the back.

My appetite built up from my earlier excursions, I chose the chicken Caesar salad to go alongside my plain scone and also ordered a flat white coffee.

The salad was perfectly crunchy, the dressing the ideal mix of creamy and salty.

As for the scone, it did not disappoint, light, quite crumbly, which went very well with the coffee.

It came with butter and jam and, if I am being picky, I’d prefer to have a good curl of butter rather than one small packaged slice.

I was lucky to have some lovely company too – some friends and a number of little scone spies too.

They went for the children’s platter, which was made up of a sandwich of their choice, crisps, fruit, a drink, and a slice of tiffin. It was a giant lunch for little bellies, but they were ably assisted by me with a rather more spacious stomach. All in, it was the perfect way to end a day in nature.

Scone score

Light, crumbly but could do with more butter.

★★★★