28 July 2014

The Restaurant at Ballachulish House

Ballachulish, Argyll, Highlands PH49 4JX

£58.00 Scottish Highlands
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  • Wine: £14.00
  • Champagne: £26.00
  • Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 8pm (one sitting only)

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Comfort has been given a high priority at this 17th-century loch-side country house where great views, good taste & a sense of restraint combine with a luxuriously comfortable feel. Evenings begin on sofas by the fire in the drawing room, where you nibble canapés while studying the nightly changing set dinner menu, then continue in the well-dressed dining room. Darin Campbell (formally head chef at Restaurant Andrew Fairlie at Gleneagles) delivers dishes that are a meeting point of classic combinations & contemporary ideas & the relative simplicity of the food exposes the quality of the Scottish produce (fish from Mallaig & langoustines from nearby Loch Linnhe, for example) & his considerable skills. It is this, rather than brash spicing & whiz-bang flavour combinations, that creates the excitement & led to the winning of a Michelin Star in 2008. Pan-fried John Dory with aubergine caviar, set tomato risotto & langoustine jus, or braised Perthshire beef with pomme purée, winter ceps, mache & a port wine sauce are typical choices. Service is slightly formal but knowledgeable, & wines combine interest & quality. With eight en-suite rooms, a golf course at the door & 15 golf courses in the area, it’s worth making a long weekend of it.

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