Wednesday 16 November 2016

The Kitchen Brasserie, Inverness: a Review

On this occasion, we flew up from Manchester to Inverness. The airline that flies the route is Flybe in conjunction with their partner airline Loganair. The in-flight magazine recommended just one restaurant in the city centre, The Mustard Seed. Chatting to fellow passengers, they too recommended it. Alas, even though we attempted to book during the afternoon, it was already booked up until 21.30. Not to be deterred, our Scottish chum apprised us that there is a sister restaurant called The Kitchen Brasserie (the link is to their facebook page as I have been unable to open their website).

The restaurant has been constructed in a modern architecture style, but is cleverly snuggled into the gap between traditional buildings by the River Ness (top image). Oddly, it does not look out of place. There are three storeys, but the ground floor is wheelchair-accessible with an immaculately clean disabled w.c. We were very fortunate to have been allocated the floor-to-ceiling window-bay table, so we had open views of the riverfront and passers-by. Additionally, we were snook round the corner form the main entrance, so were not blasted by any of the chilly winds. The décor is a cross between Scandic & industrial utilitarian: a great ambience for friends &/or family; probably not somewhere to dine for a romantic dinner for two.

There was no doubt about what we would be drinking as no-one needed to drive so we were all at liberty to consume: Prosecco it was then. The 2015 vintage produced by Cavit was delightful: not too dry nor sweet; plenty of bubbles without over-spuming; and, quite quite palatable. We collectively quaffed two bottles between the three of us prior to and during our meal.

Nary a scrap was left of our three starters (images above) on the plates/platters: always a good sign and an indication that the diner is very likely going to find something to their taste.

Our main courses (images above) were: rump steak & pepper sauce with chips; duck with parsnip purée (mine); and, pan-fried chicken on creamy mash. Again, nothing was returned to the kitchen save for dirty dishes.

Only my assistant & I opted for dessert. We decided to share a cranachan served with an 18 y.o. Tomatin malt whisky. Chef was even kind enough to share his recipe with me, which probably everyone who dines with us over the next few months will get to sample!

The bill came to a very reasonable £130, of which £50 was in relation to the wine. The cuisine is excellent. The service occasionally let itself down, probably due to it being a very busy evening; however, our main waitress, Drina, did her very best to keep us happy and every time she passed had a smile &/or a cheery word for us. Even the manager exchanged pleasantries and jokes whenever he passed by. A really affable ambience. We shall definitely be returning when next in Inverness. Recommended.

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