The Sheelin Tea Shop - Bellanaleck County Fermanagh
This is a new award, taking in the very best among the kind of informal, accessibly priced restaurants people drop into without booking; it could include café bars etc, and most are all day operations, but the main aim is to seek out good simple cooking based on quality ingredients - and especially the home baking that can be the highlight of a day out.
Northern Ireland is renowned for the quality and range of its home baking, and Julie Snoddy’s picturesque tea shop at the Sheelin Lace Shop and Museum in Bellanaleck fits the bill perfectly. Julie has built up a reputation for superb baking here – her speciality scones are especially popular with morning coffee, and there is always an array of baked goodies on display - honeymoon bites, paradise squares, yum yums, mile-high lemon meringue pie, peach & raspberry frangipane tart, chocolate gateaux; and how nice to see an old-fashioned Victoria sandwich cake, filled with jam and butter cream…
And, apart from the magnificent teashop operation, there are daily lunches (daily blackboard menu), weekend brunch (with papers to read), Sunday Lunch - and a Friday Night Dessert Bar, which is extended to include light savoury meals – and BYO wine. It’s just the kind of place that visitors hope to find when out and about - and, with the Lace Museum in the same premises, it makes an interesting destination for an outing – and is very popular with the lucky locals too.