Scone Spy sampled what is arguably, so far, its most unusual bake at this pretty little eatery in the heart of the Granite City’s West End.
Orka Artisan Cafe opened on bustling St Swithin Street just before the pandemic broke. It could so easily have gone under, but for the flexibility and determination of its owner Louise Smart, who already runs a successful bistro of the same name in the town of Ballater, a favourite haunt of the royal family during their Balmoral sojourns.
In fact a little bird told this spy Princess Anne is partial to an Orka scone or two when in town.
And we can see why.
Orka’s large, light and delicious scones come shaped as a triangle – a brave take on the traditional circular bake. And its talented creators are as inventive with taste as they are with form. Every day a lemon drizzle scone is on the menu as standard, along with one special.
On the day we visited the special was blueberry. Large enough to almost fill the plate, it was bursting with succulent, fat blueberries with a taste to die for. Had we come on another day we might have enjoyed raspberry and coconut, or raspberry and white chocolate, not to mention pineapple and apricot scones. The mind and taste buds simply boggle!
While yours truly chose a delicious cappuccino to accompany the bake of the day, Scone Spy’s guest went for a pesto chicken panini followed by waffles with Nutella sauce, and berries, judging them off-the-scale scrumptious.
The menu offered a range of equally appetising and reasonably priced alternatives, while our bill came to just over £20. This cafe lays claim to using the best Scottish produce while being mindful of sustainable practices – never more important than in the run up to the Cop26 in Glasgow.
As our waitress, Corinne McElhinney, cleared our table with a smile, owner Louise came to check on our experience, nodding a warm welcome to a regular elderly customer, who was seated outside. It seems at Orka everyone gets the royal treatment.
Totally delicious and scrumptious.
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