Food Restaurant reccos please Edinburgh/ North Berwick, Liverpool and St Andrews

Hi all, heading to UK in a couple of weeks for a golfing getaway. Looking for restaurants worth a visit in these locales. Doesn't have to be fancy, just assured cooking and quality ingredients.
I have cooked a number of dishes authored by Martin Wishart so hoping I can fit in a visit there, but otherwise no other dining plans at this stage.
I have already booked restaurants in London, which bookends the tour.
Any help appreciated.
Cheers,
Kent
 

Tom Cannavan

Administrator
Kent, I'll concentrate on St Andrews as it's roughly in my locale. The old course hotel has a choice of restaurants, but in the town itself there's nowhere I would rave about. Dean Banks is chef at ambitious Haar, but doesn't come recommended (by me). '18' is on the top floor of Rusacks Hotel overlooking the old course and is quite good - a bit like an American steakhouse in feel and food. In the town centre The Adamson is about the best of an average lot to be honest. Plenty of mid market places doing burgers or Italian, etc.

There are great restaurants, but all are outside of the town - and all owned by their chefs. The Grange is quality dining, just outside the town - a long walk or 5 mins in a taxi. There are 2 Michelin starred restaurants within 10 miles or so, £30 in a taxi and both excellent: The Peat Inn and The Cellar in Anstruther. Also recommended within the same sort of distance, The Shoregate and Craig Millar @ 16 West End. Those are all south of the town along the coast. North, through Leuchars, The Newport is a bit further on the banks of the Tay, but is very good.

If you are playing Balcomie Links (Crail Golf club), The Balcomie Hotel has just reopened after a big renovation and we had a good lunch there ate the weekend.unfortunately I couldn't recommend the restaurants in the Fairmont if you are playing its course, and there's nothing around Kingsbarns course apart from the clubhouse I guess.
 
The Herringbone in North Berwick is a cosy family run place. Decent food and the wine was pretty good too from memory. Not many options in N Berwick itself but this was really good after playing the brilliant North Berwick. Such a fun course. Enjoy!
 
Hi Kent , welcome.

The Edinburgh festival doesn't end until the 28th August, it means Edinburgh will be very busy until then, so get booking restaurants now :) . If you haven't already booked Martin Wishart ( highly recommended food ) then best start now. Other places? Scran & scallie - a gastro pub/ bistro style place run by Tom Kitchin - very good food and wines and beers. I have recently been to Smith & Gertrude, which is a kind of wine bar with food, cheeses and charcuterie - really enjoyed it, lots of wines by the glass. Aizle is good for more high end food as is Tom Kitchin's main restaurant - Kitchin - Tom Kitchin has a very good reputation for game, so you are coming as the grouse season open in scotland ( august 12th ) worth trying if you like game, Fin & Grape for more casual small plates type food ( with a good list ). Uban Angel is a good brunch place. Cafe St Honore for good casual bistro style food. Noto for great , imaginative small plate food with a good wine list. I really like Timberyard, but its seems to have a bit of a marmite reputation, I think it serves intersting food, and excellent wine list and some left field cocktails. Finally , for some really good mexican try El Cartel . That's all I have been to recently and would recommend. There are lots more! I just haven't been to them.
 

Tom Cannavan

Administrator
Cafe St Honore is a good shout by Steve. An absolute stalwart in Edinburgh, a bistro, not fine dining, but excellent quality, fine and fresh ingredients and chef-owned and run. Decent list.
 
In St Andrews do visit “Taste” for good coffee and amazing Portuguese tarts.
I enjoyed the tap room at St Andrews Brewery if you enjoy craft beer.
I had a better experience at Haar than Tom but that was in 2019. Their boxes for home delivery during Covid were in my opinion of average quality and poor VFM.
 

Tom Cannavan

Administrator
I had a better experience at Haar than Tom but that was in 2019

Ian as you may know he closed his original place in the hotel, and reappeared a year or so later round the corner. We recently met up with our Michelin-stared chef friends, the Braidwoods, who had a gastro week in this area and said the one disappointing meal they had was at Haar - in fact they were a lot more damning of it than just 'disappointing' :(
 
Ian as you may know he closed his original place in the hotel, and reappeared a year or so later round the corner. We recently met up with our Michelin-stared chef friends, the Braidwoods, who had a gastro week in this area and said the one disappointing meal they had was at Haar - in fact they were a lot more damning of it than just 'disappointing' :(
I didn’t know that Tom. I do know I get spammed mercilessly despite unsubscribing from their list.when I had lunch I went with my niece. I’m sure I posted on here about it, I’ll see if I can find the thread?
 
Kent, can't really add anything to what Tom has said about St Andrews. Haven't been to the new incarnation of Haar as the previous was a bit of a disappointment. Another venue is The Seafood Ristorante in a stunning location behind the R&A clubhouse and 100 yards from Hotel Du Vin. Pricing here is extremely ambitious but I have had good reports of the food. The other pricey venue in town is Rogue where aged steak is the speciality, again I have friends who are pretty impressed but I haven't been.
Any help you need with golf reccos just let me know.
 
Thank you so much all. Most helpful. I should have mentioned that a decent wine list an advantage, but I guess that's a given!
David, re golf, what is your preference between the New and Castle courses?
Also we have the majority of our golf booked (we are playing the mainland Open Rota courses plus North Berwick), but we may add in Kingsbarns, assuming that we can secure a tee time. Do you feel that Kingsbarn's is worth adding into the schedule? 'That's assuming that we are not totally golfed out by then!
 
Kent, the New and Castle are very different courses. The Castle sits above the town and has fabulous views, it is a "modern" links with some really great holes. The New was originally built by the R & A and then gifted to the town. It is the toughest of the courses in St Andrews but also the favourite of many locals as a fast running traditional links.
Kingsbarns is a great course in a spectacular coastal setting. It has been improved significantly over recent years with the re-profiling of many of the greens which were just too difficult for the average golfer.
My only other advice is that if you are playing a schedule of championship courses then it might be better to throw in some light relief and play somewhere like Elie or Balcomie (not Craighead) at Crail rather than another 7,000 yard monster! Of course you may all be off scratch in which case, no problem!
 
Kent, the New and Castle are very different courses. The Castle sits above the town and has fabulous views, it is a "modern" links with some really great holes. The New was originally built by the R & A and then gifted to the town. It is the toughest of the courses in St Andrews but also the favourite of many locals as a fast running traditional links.
Kingsbarns is a great course in a spectacular coastal setting. It has been improved significantly over recent years with the re-profiling of many of the greens which were just too difficult for the average golfer.
My only other advice is that if you are playing a schedule of championship courses then it might be better to throw in some light relief and play somewhere like Elie or Balcomie (not Craighead) at Crail rather than another 7,000 yard monster! Of course you may all be off scratch in which case, no problem!
Thanks David. That's most helpful. Struggled round my 6600 yd course today in rather cold but benign conditions and am certainly not a scratch golfer. Sounds like very sound advice. I am hoping that your lovely summer keeps delivering favourable weather for another four weeks!
 
Kent, I'll concentrate on St Andrews as it's roughly in my locale. The old course hotel has a choice of restaurants, but in the town itself there's nowhere I would rave about. Dean Banks is chef at ambitious Haar, but doesn't come recommended (by me). '18' is on the top floor of Rusacks Hotel overlooking the old course and is quite good - a bit like an American steakhouse in feel and food. In the town centre The Adamson is about the best of an average lot to be honest. Plenty of mid market places doing burgers or Italian, etc.

There are great restaurants, but all are outside of the town - and all owned by their chefs. The Grange is quality dining, just outside the town - a long walk or 5 mins in a taxi. There are 2 Michelin starred restaurants within 10 miles or so, £30 in a taxi and both excellent: The Peat Inn and The Cellar in Anstruther. Also recommended within the same sort of distance, The Shoregate and Craig Millar @ 16 West End. Those are all south of the town along the coast. North, through Leuchars, The Newport is a bit further on the banks of the Tay, but is very good.

If you are playing Balcomie Links (Crail Golf club), The Balcomie Hotel has just reopened after a big renovation and we had a good lunch there ate the weekend.unfortunately I couldn't recommend the restaurants in the Fairmont if you are playing its course, and there's nothing around Kingsbarns course apart from the clubhouse I guess.
Managed to obtain a booking at the Peat Inn. The Cellar booked out when we are there for dinners.
 
Kent,
The others have covered everywhere pretty well indeed. I would heartily endorse a round on the New at St Andrews, possibly the best of the courses there (IMHO) but agree on a change of emphasis by trying Elie or Balcomie instead.

But back to East Lothian. If you are staying in Edinburgh my recommendation would be to eat there! There are really no exceptional eating places in East Lothian, sadly. The Marine Hotel in NB has had a major upgrade and the food is significantly better now. Their Sunday Lunch in particular. Tom Kitchin has an outpost in Gullane, the Bonnie Badger, but it is pricey and for us doesn't quite live up to his other places. The fish and chip shop in NB in Quality Street is very good for a basic café style version or you can carry it to the beach and eat it there.
Our favourite in EL is still La Potiniere. The magic wine list is long gone but the cooking is excellent, if a little old fashioned though in a good way. Not a place for a boys night out though, you could almost use the description "genteel"!

I'm sure you will enjoy the trip, but be prepared for anything weather wise. And NB West Links may be the most fun course you'll play.
 
Kent,
The others have covered everywhere pretty well indeed. I would heartily endorse a round on the New at St Andrews, possibly the best of the courses there (IMHO) but agree on a change of emphasis by trying Elie or Balcomie instead.

But back to East Lothian. If you are staying in Edinburgh my recommendation would be to eat there! There are really no exceptional eating places in East Lothian, sadly. The Marine Hotel in NB has had a major upgrade and the food is significantly better now. Their Sunday Lunch in particular. Tom Kitchin has an outpost in Gullane, the Bonnie Badger, but it is pricey and for us doesn't quite live up to his other places. The fish and chip shop in NB in Quality Street is very good for a basic café style version or you can carry it to the beach and eat it there.
Our favourite in EL is still La Potiniere. The magic wine list is long gone but the cooking is excellent, if a little old fashioned though in a good way. Not a place for a boys night out though, you could almost use the description "genteel"!

I'm sure you will enjoy the trip, but be prepared for anything weather wise. And NB West Links may be the most fun course you'll play.
Thanks Mike, most helpful. We are staying at the Marine Hotel I think.
Certainly will be packing the wet weather golf gear (Scottish brand, so should be able to handle the conditions), just tossing up whether I need a warmish jacket for evenings. At the moment it looks like bathers might be in order!
 
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