Although this sophisticated brasserie is proud of its roots, you’re unlikely to find much cliché here: no tartan serviettes or stag’s heads hanging on the walls thank you very much. Instead, the interiors at Blackwood’s, which is housed in the boutique Nira Caledonia hotel, blends boho-chic with contemporary comfort, and the menu acts as its ode to Scottish produce.
Local produce is at the heart of the menu and the kitchen strives to source locally and keep food miles to a minimum. As well as providing an ethical menu, it also ensures fresh ingredients and full flavours. Over 40% of the menu is labelled with its Scottish origins, from Shetland rope grown mussels to Scottish farmed meat, fish, poultry and game.
The kitchen here is typified by a Josper grill, which turns out the likes of 21-day aged Scottish steaks, rare-breed pork, organically reared lamb and Loch Duart salmon. Elsewhere on the menu, you’ll find other fastidiously-sourced native ingredients, including lobster with garlic butter and medallions of venison. Aside from the Josper grill’s works of culinary art, you can bookend your meal with tempting starters such as beef carpaccio with horseradish cream and pea shoots, and indulgent desserts including chocolate fondant, or perhaps caramelised lemon tart.
Propping up the bar is an impressive selection of 25 Scottish whiskies, as well as a version of “the strong stuff” which is exclusive to the hotel. Charming, modern and with good food at its heart, Blackwood’s is a testament to the high-quality produce provided right within Scotland’s own borders.