Loulou’s, Garelochhead, Scotland

Ever had a boerewors sausage roll? How about a bobotie steak bake? Of course you haven’t – because what kind of a lunatic would take these South African delicacies and stuff them inside a hunk of pastry?

Well, on the other side of the world from South Africa, this homesick homie stumbled across Louolou’s deli, a cute little spot in the cute little town of Garelochhead in Argyll and Bute. And imagine my surprise when I discovered a whole range of tasty-as-fuck treats inspired by the South African Cape Malay cooking style.

Barbecue (or braai, if we’re keeping it real) favourite boerewors is usually served on a hotdog roll, but Loulou puts in delicious pastry – and it makes for the kind of snack that gives your mouth an orgasm. Has your gub ever climaxed? Well shit, mine does every payday when I make the drive along to Garelochhead for my lunchtime treats.

Bobotie? A spicy, fruity South African mince-based dish. Not really one of my favourites…but put that mince in a pastry casing and it just works so damn well.

Other South African goodies available include traditional crunchie, essentially an oaty flapjack but firmer and twice as moreish. And Louolou also offers frozen dishes for you to take away and smash at home. Bobotie served in the traditional way – kind of like Greek moussaka, but better – is among the available take-home options.

Of course there aren’t nearly enough ex pat South Africans in Argyll and Bute to keep a place like this going, so clearly Durban woman Louolou has got the blend just right. Her brioche bagels are outrageously delicious. Chicken mayo with a hint of chilli is my usual, but I’ve had and enjoyed the jalapeno cheese and bacon bagel a good few times too.

This is a takeaway deli only, so there’s nowhere to sit and eat. But with the gorgeous surroundings of Garelochhead at hand, you can find somewhere to gaze at the view and stuff your face.

Loulou’s is a hit with locals as well as folk from further afield, and it’s no surprise. A wide choice of high quality food and excellent, chatty service all adds up to reasons to keep going back.

Check out this cracking little deli. You will not regret making the effort.

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