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Best Eats: Scotland

The food in Scotland was delicious! And, since my entire blog is gluten free, I must preface with this: I stuffed my face with gluten in Scotland. Many folks who have gluten allergies can typically eat the gluten outside of the United States because it is much more natural than the over-processed bleached flour of the US.. I've even had friends with Celiac Disease tell me they've been able to eat the gluten overseas. With that being said, some glutenous items did still make me sick. But, hey, when in Scotland!


Below I write about some of my favorite meals & bites in Scotland, broken out into the four locations we stayed during our trip. With the exception of some of the bakeries & fish n' chips stops, many restaurants had gluten free options as well! I've bolded all of the stops that specifically had many gluten free options.


scotland
Copper Still

Edinburgh

  • The Doric | We stumbled upon this classic Scottish pub when we first arrived in Edinburgh, exhausted, awaiting our apartment to be ready. It was honestly one of my favorite meals of the trip, & the absolute best "chips" of the entire trip. Plus, we found out that The Doric is Edinburgh's oldest gastro-pub! This stop also gave us our first taste of Cullen Skink, an amazing smoked haddock creamy chowder. Sorry Bostonian friends, but it's way better than clam chowder!

  • Copper Still | Copper Still seems to be the group's collective favorite of the trip! Situated right on Edinburgh's Royal Mile with delicious food, fantastic cocktails, & cheers to whoever picks the music for this restaurant. Plus, they make the BEST cheesecake I have ever had, & it's gluten free to boot! We loved it so much, we actually went back a second time in our 2-night stay in Edinburgh for more cheesecake & cocktails.

  • The Outsider | I actually found this restaurant from a Scottish traveling account that I follow on Instagram, & it did not disappoint! This was more of a modern place with great lunch specials & spritz'. The staff was friendly & the food was scrumptious!

  • Johnnie Walker | Along with Calton Hill & St. Anthony's Chapel Ruins hike, the Johnnie Walker Distillery had the best view in Edinburgh! Their rooftop bar was so sleek & beautiful, & I was excited that they had plenty of gin options as well! We didn't know this at the time since we skipped the tour & went straight for the booze, but the distillery tour includes 3 drinks.

  • The Witchery | The Witchery was surprisingly the most overrated stop of the trip. Super over-priced, & honestly not very witchy at all. "Witchery" comes from the fact that hundreds of witches were burned at the stake in front of Edinburgh Castle, up on Castlehill where the restaurant is located. The food was delicious, but definitely not my favorite meal of the trip. I would save this stop for a lovely romantic dinner for two, not for a family of 5 haha! P.S. you can also stay here & the rooms look awesome!

  • Pep & Fodder | I adored this little brekkie & lunch shop directly across the street from the Princes Street Apartments that we stayed in. In fact, our last morning in Edinburgh, I was up so early with jet lag, waiting patiently for Pep & Fodder to open. Great for a grab n' go breakfast or a cute little sit down breakfast sandwich or oatmeal.


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The Waterfront

Inverness

  • The Waterfront | I spotted this restaurant right on River Ness as we drove into Inverness, so we decided to pop in as we arrived pretty late, taking our time driving through Cairngorms. The Waterfront had pretty decent pub food (fish n' chips, burgers, etc.), but not my favorite stop.

  • The Good Craic | One of my favorite breakfast stops of the trip! I got my go-to Scottish brekkie, salmon & eggs, while the rest of the table got eggs benedict & oatmeal, which they enjoyed as well. We also adored our waitress, Joanie, especially after she called the golf course to book a T-Time for the boys.

  • Johnny Foxes | A classic, fun sports bar with karaoke & live music. Plus, they had vibrators & cock rings in the bathrooms! Our table got a good kick out of that. The food was great with tons of variety, & lots of gluten free options as well. I had to get more Cullen Skink once I saw that on the menu. By the way, we found out "skink" means "stew" & Cullen is a seaside village in Scotland. We loved the fun atmosphere of this Scottish bar!

  • Grain & Grind | A great little coffee shop with breakfast sandwiches & pastries. We popped into this cafe a couple of times as it was right across from the Cherrytree house we stayed at.

  • Comfort Food | Our waiter at Johnny Foxes told us that Comfort Food is the best brekkie in Inverness, but I have to disagree. I did enjoy my breakfast here - I even tried blood pudding here & liked it. But, I must say, The Good Craic was much better!

  • Castle Tavern | My parents & I popped in here for a pint while the boys were golfing & loved the vibe. Located right next door to Inverness Castle, Castle Tavern is a great spot for a drink or food with views of the Castle & River Ness below. I wish we got to stay here for dinner!

  • Uile-Bheist Distillery | I had so much fun downing Scotch at this mythical distillery with stunning illustrations of kelpie criptids on the walls. My dad hadn't had Scotch since his college days, so we had a hell of a time!

  • The Waterside | The Waterside & Uile-Bheist are actually side by side on River Ness, & I believe they have the same owners. One of my favorite meals of the trip, the food was AMAZING! I got the 12hr Highland Beef Bourguignon with Sautéed Spinach Parmentier Potatoes, & it was quite honestly one of the best meals of my life. Gorgeous views of River Ness as well!

Glen Rowan Cafe, one of our brief stops on the drive from Inverness to Isle of Skye, deserves a little honorable mention! Cafe Rowan is a cute little cafe right near Loch Ness & close to Urquhart Castle Ruins. After being introduced to a Victoria Cake at Grain & Grind, I knew I had to get one here, & it was one of the best cakes I've ever had - this one was lemon! I believe that have a full menu as well.


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The Rosedale

Isle of Skye

  • The Portree Hotel | Portree Hotel, where we stayed in Skye, is known for having the best food in the quaint town of Portree. Unfortunately, they didn't have room for us during our stay, so we popped over to The Rosedale. Although, we were able to sit down for our complimentary breakfast & it was my favorite brekkie of the trip! The best Scottish salmon & eggs yet, & honestly the best smoked salmon period.

  • The Rosedale | The Rosedale was where we ended up for dinner during our stay, & it just so happened to be the sister restaurant to The Portree Hotel. You can stay at The Rosedale as well! The Rosedale was a cool old building situated right in Portree's bay, & their food was great too! My mom & I both got the seafood linguine - scrumptious & oh so fresh!

  • The Highland Cow Shop | I did not wake up early enough to make it here, but my parents did & loved it! It looked super cute across the street, & they reported back yummy coffee & pastries.

  • Café Cùil | Brad & I agree that this hidden gem near the Fairy Pools, is home to the best fried chicken sandwich either of us has ever tasted. It was bomb! Pickles, spicy sauce, & coleslaw, which I don't normally enjoy. A super cute spot, plus they had a precious wee gift shop as well. Did you know that "cùil" means nook or corner in Gaelic? 






Oban

  • Cuan Mór | Another one of my absolute favorite eateries of the trip! I spotted this gem right on the waterfront as we drove into Oban as well, & it did not disappoint. Known as the Seafood Capital of Scotland, I knew Oban would have some of the best seafood of the trip, so I had to indulge in some fish n' chips! Cuan Mór easily had the best fish n' chips - the breading was unbelievable. Like many pubs we indulged at, Cuan Mór had all of the Scottish classics. My mom got the steak pie & Brad got the haggis, which were both amazing. Yes, fried haggis is amazing.

  • The View | The view did not disappoint at "The View." We got to enjoy our brekkie on the terrace, overlooking Oban bay - a beautiful way to start the day. Plus, we heard they have live music & club nights up at The View as well.

  • Hinba Coffee Roasters | Hinba is such a cute, quaint coffee shop with wee meet pies & breakfast treats. They roast their own coffee here, & made the best lavender latte I've had - not too sweet!

  • Oban Whisky Distillery | We popped in for a little sampling, but I believe you can take a tour as well. The folks pouring tastes were very knowledgeable about their whisky, & really helped me find one that I would actually like. The Oban 14 is what I went with as she described it as a bit more gentle like honey - I liked it!

  • Oban Chocolate Company | You have to pick up a yummy little treat at the Oban Chocolate Co. if you visit! They have tons of amazing chocolate & a cute little cafe with hot chocolate, milk shakes, cake, etc.. Oban Chocolate is a must!

  • George Street Fish Restaurant | We enjoyed a big lunch at this cute little spot right on the main street of Oban,, George Street. If you stop here, you've got to get the George Haddock Tea lunch special - haddock fish n' chips, mushy peas, bread, & tea/coffee/cava. I've noticed that some sort of pea side seems to always be served with fish n' chips.

  • The Lorne Bar | We had our last supper here, & it was the perfect classic Scottish pub to end the trip with. They had all of the Scottish classics, delicious desserts, & more.


I will leave you with this last tip! If you ever make it to Scotland, be sure to have yourself a pint of Thistly Cross, our collective favorite hard cider of the trip! Enjoy & comment with your favorite Scottish eats & drinks.

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