If fate ever happens to take you on the N63 between Roscommon Town and Galway City, or in the opposite direction, and you find yourself in need of refreshment, do drop in to the Treat Café in Lackagh, Co Galway, near Turloughmore. The café is situated in a roadside complex of various businesses including a DIY store, a supermarket, a beauty salon, a hairdresser’s, a car wash, a pub, a pharmacy and medical centre. Services include a post office and ATM, and there is a spacious car park. The whole complex is redolent of a modern version of feudalism, designed to meet most of the needs of the locals, and is the creation of one family, the Flynns, whose provenance in this location goes back to 1842, when they opened a bar and grocery store. The current lord and lady of the manor are Julien and Emma Flynn.
The Treat Café in Lackagh is a people-friendly space, without the musak so characteristic of modern pubs and eating places, blaring so that you can hardly hear yourself or your table companions. The staff, too, were cheerful, prompt and friendly. The decor was interesting: the mauve, red and yellowy green on the walls and lampshades were echoed in the varied upholstery of the chairs, and yet the face of an ancient clock, with Roman numerals and filigreed hands, peers down from a wall. Perhaps the clock is a reminder of the long history of Flynns of Lackagh , hanging there in the middle of a more contemporary, faintly funky decor.
Our coffee was excellent. My wife declared that her slice of carrot cake was the best she had ever tasted. My rock bun, unlike most rock buns I have recently encountered, did not disintegrate into crumbs at the first touch of a knife, and the inner part was soft and consistent in texture. It was crowned with a glacé cherry. I enjoyed it. (I should say here that more substantial fare may be had at the café.)
All in all, a most satisfactory and refreshing break as we drove back from a music festival in Strokestown, Co Roscommon, to Limerick City.