My family and I were looking for somewhere to have a quick lunch in Hawick, we usually go to Turnbulls, but thought we would try somewhere new and spotted an intriguing sign leading down a narrow alley to a cafe called The Pickled Orange.
We were quite disappointed from the outset ... the decor was unremarkable bordering on dismal but we soldiered on in the belief that sometimes the best food can be found in the most uninviting of places. We needed help with the menu on a chalk board which had writing more suited to a doctor's prescription pad. Nor was it vegetarian-friendly and a menu devoid of fish should have been an indicator.
The trouble is we had reached the point of no return and so without causing embarrassment all-round we stayed the course and two of us plumped for the green pea and mint soup while our remaining third opted for an egg mayonnaise baguette.
The soup arrived full of promise. It looked inviting and smelled fresh and delightful - sadly appearances can be deceptive. There was more than a pinch of salt in the soup which masked all other tastes. Several minutes after the soup arrived the baguette arrived - it too contained more salt than a glass of seawater and the salad was limp and had given up the will to live rather reflecting our mood. Our hearts sank as the second course of cheese and tomato toasted sandwiches arrived and looked as appealing as a cold bucket of vomit. The rubbery cheese oozed out of the white bread as though it had just escaped from Porton Down laboratories.
The desert menu had looked rather inviting but we'd lost our appetite by then and asked for the bill. My old mum once cautioned against wandering down dark alleys at night saying it was inviting trouble - she's right ... except this was daylight.
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