My dear old granny would often say: “There’s no issue so great that can’t be solved by mulling it over with a good cup of tea”.
Those wise words were ringing in my head last week when, half way down the A9, a warning light suddenly pinged orange on the dashboard.
Fearing it was a precursor to smoke, flames and an almighty breakdown (perhaps a little dramatic, yes, but my skills lie in cake, not cars), I took the next sliproad for a pitstop in Pitlochry. Well, there are worse places to be stranded!
Memories of my last visit to the picturesque little town came flooding back as soon as I stepped out of my broken banger – specifically, the deliciously fluffy scones served at Hettie’s Tearoom, where I did a little spying back in 2016.
My feet, controlled by my rumbling stomach, made a beeline for the eatery’s welcoming shopfront, complete with bright blue paintwork. It’s what Granny would recommend.
As its name suggests, the special thing about Hettie’s is the extensive tea selection, which covers everything from Lapsang Souchong and Earl Grey to green and Oolong. I would usually opt for a builder’s with more sugar than my dentist would like, but with my nerves a little shaken from the car-tastrophe, I opted for a pot of Little Spearmint China, a delightful blend of Yunnon and fresh spearmint, and a simple plain scone.
My crumbly treat, served with jam and butter, was just as good as I remembered, but I couldn’t help but feel a little jealous when the lunch dishes started arriving at other tables.
Fresh homemade soup, stuffed sandwiches, gooey melted paninis, flatbread pizzas and flaky sausage rolls, everything looked so tempting. Alas, with my motor requiring some attention, I knew I should head back on the road.
As I reluctantly left my table and paid the bill, I spotted some individual carrot cakes (vegan nonetheless!) and decided to take one for the road. Delicious.
Oh and as for the car? It was just low tyre pressure. See, a cup of tea does solve everything.
Crumbly, served with jam and butter, perfect.
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