Motorway services represent a challenge for most people who want to eat good food, let alone a coeliac. I have spent many years driving up and down the M6 mainly, visiting family. Over this time many of them have improved, introducing M&S and Waitrose outlets, which at least mean you can buy a salad or a decent sandwich, rather than the usual horrors.
One services which gets it right is the lovely Tebay, close to Shap on the edge of the Lake District. With a farm shop that sells local breads, pies and goodies, and a cafe that does great porridge and pretty good quality food, stopping at Tebay has to be factored into the long distance motoring schedule.
This week was the first stop as a coeliac. While I applaud the cafe for having a chocolate and almond gluten free cake (hooray – not just brownie!), my breakfast was more of a challenge. We have to accept that these outlets are catering for high volume custom, so I was not expecting much. Obviously the porridge is now out, as it is not gluten free, as is the cooked breakfast with sausages, hash browns etc, and the toast and muesili. However, they do have yoghurt and fruit – which is what we should all be eating anyway! And if I was feeling brave, I could probably have had bacon, beans and mushrooms (no mushrooms please!). So while this is not a food review, I will give them 2 out of 5 for the cafe, but 5 out of 5 for the farm shop where I bought some lovely goodies!
And these are undoubtedly the finest services in the UK….