Emma and I spent our mini honeymoon on the west coast of Scotland, basing ourselves in the lovely seaside village of Appin.
We kicked off our culinary week with dinner at the classy Airds Hotel at Port Appin. They have a west-facing dining room offering great views of sunsets. While we didn’t quite snag a table by the window, we still had a nice view of the sea and sunset.
It was lovely to be greeted by the maitre d’ who kindly offered us a glass of free champagne in celebration of our wedding, the only place to do so all week. We had a look at the menu in the bar before proceeding to our table. Another lovely touch were some light canapés served with drinks in the bar.
The first course was pan roasted Mallaig brill, served with fennel, grapes and white wine sauce, a nod to sauce Veronique. Being Scotland with its bounty of fresh seafood, the brill was brill and the classical accompaniments did it justice.
Next up was ballotine of rabbit wrapped in Parma ham with quince jelly and plum chutney. Another classical inspired dish and it was nice that the flavour of rabbit came through nicely.
Then came our favourite course of the evening – seared Mull langoustine, served with peas, baby carrots and gingerbread. The langoustines were the star – plump, juicy and oh so sweet.
The main meat course was fillet of Scotch (of course) beef, wild mushrooms, spring cabbage and red wine jus. The beef was flavourful and cooked to medium rare perfection.
The palate cleanser was a tasting of Scottish strawberries in jelly, parfait, marshmallow, yoghurt and black pepper sorbet.
Then an exemplary dark chocolate and orange soufflé served with almond ice cream. My only complaint – it was too small!
The Airds Hotel serves a beautiful classical menu, showcasing some of the best produce in the area, served in beautiful surroundings.
Food: ★★★★★ Service: ★★★★☆ Ambiance: ★★★★☆ VFM: ★★★★★ Overall: ★★★★★
Price: £76 was quite pricey but this is a tourist hotspot.