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Book Report: Scotland

  • gini Dec 31, 2012 12:21 PM
  • 4

The Dogs: http://www.thedogsonline.co.uk/ - we enjoyed the space a lot and the menu was quite interesting. Fun decor also.
Fish and Seafood Pie: under-seasoned, but the crust was flaky
Rabbit & Chorizo Casserole: under-seasoned, but the flavors complemented each other
Chips Cooked in Dripping: easily the best chips I had in Scotland - these were crispy and possibly even double fried

Beirut: http://www.beirutrestaurant.co.uk/
We four shared a Selection for Four. The long and the short of it is that the mezze were delicious and the mixed grill disappointing. I think they overcooked most of their meats. However, hummus, babaganooj, spicy sausages, and falafel were all top notch.

Tail End: http://www.yelp.com/biz/tailend-resta...
Their fresh haddock was unbelievable - one of the better pieces of fish I've had
Smoked salmon - a nice piece of smoked salmon
Mussels - the steaming liquid wasn't the most flavorful, but the mussels themselves were tasty.
Chips - soggy, sad

Port Charlotte Hotel: http://www.portcharlottehotel.co.uk/ - probably my favorite meal of the week
Local Oysters - my god these were sweet - really delicious
Seared Scallops with salad - again, beautifully fresh, possibly in a balsamic glaze
Roasted duck over a leek and potato cake with mashed squash and vegetables - perfectly cooked duck and an interesting sauce and potato cake. The baby corn and peapods were unnecessary.
Sticky Toffee Pudding - wow, wonderful

Lochside Hotel: http://www.lochsidehotel.co.uk/Islay_... - we had breakfast here
I was delighted that they served kippers for breakfast. The chef's eggs were also perfectly poached and the mushrooms earthy and dark. While the porridge was unseasoned, I believe that is traditional, so I think it was what it was supposed to be.

CyberBistro, Islay: http://www.islaycybercafe.co.uk/ - very tasty, homestyle food
Mushroom Soup - wonderful, quite warming, but also well seasoned
Steak Pie - a very flaky crust, but slightly under-seasoned
Chips - by this point I was basically done with chips, but I still don't think I liked them.

Mr Singh's Indian Cottage: http://www.mr-singh.co.uk/cottage/ - very tasty Indian with some Punjabi twists
Mixed vegetarian appetizers were uninspiring, though there were mushrooms in sauce that were creamy and gingery - tasty
Haggis Pakora - hey, can't get that at home. Not bad, actually.
Chicken Tikki Masala - pretty pedestrian, but I am not a huge fan of the dish to begin with.
Lamb Cottage Bhuna - spicy, yet completely balanced.
Saag paneer - done in a very traditional punjabi way - not gloopy like many Westernized versions which suffer from too much moisture.

Ubiquitous Chip - http://www.ubiquitouschip.co.uk/
haggis, neeps, tatties - wow, probably the best haggis I've ever had
Venison Sausages with mashed and sauteed spinach - a wonderful take on bangers and mash - the sausage was unctuous.
Pan fried salmon with vanilla celery root and beets - a great combination of sweet, salty, crispy and crunchy
treacle tart with clootie dumpling ice cream - sweet, but not cloyingly so
Almond sponge with chocolate ice cream - tasty

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  1. Thanks very much for your lengthy & detailed post. If I could ask one favor, could you possibly edit your post to note in what cities/towns/villages all these places are located?

    2 Replies
    1. re: DavidT

      It's not allowing me to edit, so I'll reply.

      The Dogs: Edinburgh
      Beirut: Edinburgh
      Tail End: St Andrews
      Ubiquitous Chip: Glasgow
      Port Charlotte: Port Charlotte, Islay
      CyberBistro: Port Ellen, Islay
      Mr Singh's: Stirling
      Lochside Hotel: Bowmore, Islay

      1. re: gini

        Thanks very much for the additional info. It is helpful.

    2. Good to hear the Ubiquitous Chip is still good.

      The Good Food Guide describes it as a "Glasgow icon" and I reckon rightly so. It's a goodly number of years since we were last there but I also remember a starter of haggis, neeps and tatties which was outstanding in flavour. There was also a simple pan fried piece of cod which was absolutely bang-on.