As a kid we enjoyed many trips down to North Berwick and Gullane.
The destinations were great but the trips also took us through Musselburgh and that meant one thing – Luca’s!
Everyone knows it makes the best ice cream on the Edinburgh side of the Forth.
It has done for a century, although I do have a soft spot for Arcari’s ice cream which was made by my late family friend Rudolph in his factory up The Wisp.
Luca’s has stood proudly on the same High Street spot since I was a bairn and it’s as good today as it was all those decades ago.
Sunday saw us heading through Musselburgh, so it would have been wrong not to uphold a great family tradition.
This time we sat in – as a kid, I honestly cannot remember ever getting further than the ice cream counter at the front.
And it was a busy wee cafe. The turnover was constant but the service was simply spot on.
As for the menu? Well take your pick from a mahoosive all-day breakfast to a dessert which promised “toffee fudgy wudgy” among its ingredients. True, ordering it may make you sound like a character in a big kids’ TV show!
Luca’s may be famed for its ice cream but it also has a menu that ticks the box for most folk – everything from soup to scones, paninis to pancakes, and from baked potatoes to banana splits.
There’s even a shared juniors and seniors page which offers a free disposable bib if required. I’m guessing that’s for the kids …!
But in an ice cream parlour you have to have ice cream. It’s the law.
I really had my eye on a banana split or knickerbocker glory – the king of sundaes – but I was full after my main meal, so I had to make do with an ice cream float.
And Luca’s don’t skimp on the ingredients – two scoops instead of the bog standard one offered in other places.
Simply add coke and you have a drink that makes you feel you’re a 12-year old once more. Add in a milkshake that was thick and tangy, and all we had to do was decide what to eat.
I must confess, I was tempted by the “Musselburgh traditions” section.
What’s that, you say? Fish freshly caught in the Forth – from bait to plate in a matter of hours?
A local delicacy which celebrates the culinary history of the Honest Toun?
It’s pie, pie and beans, or pie, beans and fries. That’s my kind of tradition!
We opted for chilli beef nachos and they were ace.
Freshly made, served promptly, with just enough jalapenos to add a wee kick, and guzzled down until we burst.
It was wonderful to visit a place of my childhood and find it in top form.
Even in a world of generic Costa Coffee shops, and fast food takeaways where you’d be as well eating the box than the food, for all the nutritional value it contains, Luca’s remains a stand-out place to go.
Any Bairn who has ever ventured down the east Lothian coast will surely have stopped for a cone or a cuppa.
Next time you are across, pop in – you won’t be disappointed!