Saturday, May 19, 2007

The good, the bad & the ugly

An...Interesting Scottish Experience

So my step-brother got married in mid-April in Scotland, and that is how I found myself in the small town of Pitlochry, at the feet of the Highlands, in the Moulin (pronounced 'moo-lin', not in the French way) Hotel. Here it is:

Okay, it doesn't quite look like that anymore. For a slightly more up-to-date image, go to their website.

Everything was tartan:

We arrived a little late to the hotel from Edinburgh airport, and were the last ones of the evening to be served in the hotel's dining room, if you don't count the various stuffed animals that were accompanying us throughout dinner. Taxidermy is almost enough to put you off your dinner. Verdict: Ugly.

My starter was a terrine, which wasn't horrible, and came with oatcakes, apparently a Scottish staple. Lots of oatcakes. Verdict: Bad.

Ben was adventurous and had the venison for his main course, which tasted like liver, which is apparently what venison tastes like if it's left too long. And I had the duck, which was alright. The apple slices on top were the best bit! Oddly, Ben & my dishes are almost indistinguishable. Verdict: Bad.

For dessert I was adventurous and had some cloutie dumpling, a concoction of suet, flour, oatmeal, golden syrup, sultanas and buttermilk. It was delicious. Apparently you can eat it for breakfast, as it showed up again on the breakfast menu. The cream sauce was particularly yummy. Verdict: Good.

After dinner we retired to the lounge and had tea. The tea came with tablet, a sort of Scottish fudge that I was happy to try because I'd been searching for it for Michelle's colleague Maureen for a while. It was amazingly sweet - it's basically sugar. You can see it in the bottom of the picture, and reflected in the very cool silver teapot. I quite liked the scripty engraved Moulin Hotel. Verdict: Good.

After tea Dad & Jenny went to bed, and I bought Ben a pint in the Moulin Inn, which is the oldest part of the hotel, dating from 1695. They have recently started brewing their own beer again, and have been voted best pub in Scotland the past two years running, and if that isn't a good reason to have a late-night pint with your brother, I don't know what is. Ben had the somewhat-cheesily-named 'Braveheart,' and I had the darker 'Old Remedial'. Verdict: Goooood. Thankfully the night was looking up!

1 comment:

moyrad said...

The taxedermed animals are almost disturbing as the decor. No wonder Colin and Justin need to redecorate Scotland. Of all the food you have shown, I think i would only dare eat, i mean drink the beer and perhaps the tea. i love the colour of the beer.