Tuesday 17 May 2016

Dinner at the Douglas Bistro, Douglas Hotel, Brodick, Arran

I've been at Mr EmmaEats for a while now to go exploring this beautiful country that we live in, so we decided to pack our bags and head to the Isle of Arran for a night. I've been dying to get out and about to do some walking/hiking so what better destination than Arran for this. We were staying in The Douglas Hotel and our package included dinner so we ate in the Douglas Bistro. I had dinner booked for 7.30pm but as our ferry was running late I rang the hotel to change the booking until 8pm. We arrived into the hotel at 7.55pm and were told by Kate that she knew our ferry wouldn't be in until this time so she had changed our reservation to 8.15pm to give us time to go up to our room and freshen up. Talk about customer service - major thumbs up to Kate and the Douglas hotel for this. Anyway once we had checked in we headed down to the Douglas Bistro and were greeted by friendly staff and brought to our table. We were seated at the back of the beautifully decorated restaurant, however, the next time I'm there (and yes there will certainly be a next time) I will book a table by the window - the views are spectacular from the hotel.

The Bistro has a lovely menu and a great specials menu, both Mr EE and I were struggling to pick a dish as we liked so many of them. For starters we went for one of the specials, the warm salad of peppered goats cheese, beetroot & black olive tapenade. For mains I went for a special again, the slow braised balsamic & garlic lamb shank, mashed potato, carrots & savoy cabbage. Mr EE went for the grilled Scottish marinated & skewered chateaubriand espetada, house style fries & adjika sauce. Shortly after we placed our order the waitress came back to advise that they had no goats cheese specials left - my heart sank - so we had to pick again. This time we both went for the roast pumpkin salad, baby spinach, feta, sun dried tomatoes, red onion, pine kernels & curry vinaigrette. As I said, I was a little disappointed that they didn't have any goats cheese but, the pumpkin salad certainly made up for it. It was delicious and so tasty. It was really full of flavour and everything worked so well together.

After the lovely starter we were expecting great things from our main course and once again they didn't disappoint. Our dishes were really tasty, my lamb was melt in your mouth stuff, the gravy was so tasty I nearly wanted to drink it off the plate and the mash was done to perfection, lovely and creamy. Mr EE loved his skewer, he said the meat was great. He was really looking forward to the adjika sauce because he loves hot & spicy stuff but he did say that it wasn't really that hot (the picture of the skewer is terrible, and doesn't do it any justice). I asked to taste a bit of the sauce on a chip, the sauce was also cold - I think it would have complemented the dish better if it was hot. But all in all we really enjoyed our food. We decided not to have dessert as after all we were away to do healthy things like hiking so having a big dessert just didn't fit in with the weekends plan.

Food rating:- 4/5.


The service at the Bistro was great (and as I said above it was great from the minute we stepped inside the door of the hotel). The waitresses were very friendly and were on hand when needed. I know I mentioned this in the food paragraph above but I was disappointed that they did not have the goats cheese special left. I know this is more food related but I still think it has something to do with service. I know we were eating late and not many people came in after us but it was still on the menu. It may not have bothered me as much if we were advised when given the specials menu that there was none left. Service rating:- 4/5.

The restaurant was very busy and once the big table next to us with a group of men sitting at it were finished you could actually hear yourself think. In general I did enjoy the vibe of the place, however initially I did feel like I was shouting at Mr EE (not because he was annoying me, just to be heard). Atmosphere rating:- 4/5.

Because dinner was included in the room rate I forgot to take the receipt with me - but if I remember correctly it was in and around £78. This included a bottle of wine and two americano's. I thought it was very reasonably priced for the quality of the food and service. Price rating:- 5/5.

Last Words
This is certainly a great place to eat, the food and service are great. We went into the bar afterwards for some live music (you can also get food in the bar if you didn't fancy the formal setting of the restaurant). It is conveniently located to the ferry and all public transport links around the island. It is definitely worth a visit. In general our stay at the Douglas Hotel was great. Total rating:- 17 out of 20.

Date Visited:- Saturday, 7 May 2016

Restaurant Details:-
The Douglas Bistro,
The Douglas Hotel,
Isle of Arran,
KA27 8AW

Website: The Douglas Bistro
Telephone: 01770 302 968

Thanks a mil for reading.

Emma Mai xx

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