I’ve heard so much about The Happy Pear. I was given their cookbook as a gift and all the recipes look gorgeous. I’ve been meaning to go for ages but never quite found the time. I went last weekend and I can’t fault the food in this place. If you didn’t already know it’s a vegetarian cafe run by David and Stephen Flynn and originally started as a veg shop but has progressed to a cafe and a restaurant in the evenings.
I really enjoyed the food. It was gorgeous. I love trying vegetarian food because I think you need to be more creative and I love that side of food.
I had the chowder with salad and hummus. The chowder was a little cold but it didn’t put me off it. It was a mushroom chowder with 3 different types of mushrooms and some veg. It tasted gorgeous and it was a decent size portion. I didn’t really need the salad because the chowder was filling enough but got two different ones anyway. One had potatoes and I’m not sure what was in the other. The hummus is fantastic and reminds me of the hummus in the Fumbally. The potato salad was nice as was the other salad.
LP got the Normandy Butter Bean Bake which looked like a lasagna. I had food envy when I tasted it. It was really nice. He also got a salad of beetroot and spinach. He got the end of the salad because there wasn’t much spinach in it which he was disappointed about.
We got two desserts. I had the salted caramel slice and he had a carrot cake. Both were lovely and tbh we didn’t need two. One would have done us but that didn’t stop us finishing them.
Would I go back? I’m really sorry to say this but I probably wouldn’t go back. Maybe if I lived closer and went at a time when it wasn’t as busy but it’s an hour or so drive away and I felt very stressed leaving the place.
What didn’t I like? What I didn’t like about The Happy Pear was the layout. I saw no clear signage about how to order food. I joined what I thought was a queue but it was just a group of people standing in the hallway chatting.
In the queue, there were people with big bags and I found it extremely awkward to stand in the small room trying to look at the menu while people bumped into me from every angle. It was like a canteen style service which I hadn’t known before going there. I guess that was the reason my chowder was a bit cold and LP’s salad didn’t contain much spinach. We ordered our food and when we went to pay the girl at the till rushed us so much she actually undercharged us (we didn’t realise this until we left). When we went looking for seats upstairs someone just abruptly decided to stop on the stairs (which are quite small) and almost sent me flying backwards. I later saw a customer fall up the stairs and another staff member drop plates when they reached the top. Some people like places that are laid out like The Happy Pear. I know my mate Maria would love it. Not me. I find trying to carry a plate of food difficult enough without having to manoeuvre around corners and avoid people bumping into me.
When I went back down to get cake it was a nightmare trying to pay again as I didn’t know if I could skip the queue if I was only getting cake. I actually wanted to get a coffee but felt rushed again by the same girl who served me the first time and I felt like I would be bothering her by asking for one so I left it.