Sunday, August 24, 2014

Scotland: Feel Good Foodies Goes International!

My long-awaited trip to Scotland with the hubby and father-in-law, six months in the making, just wrapped up.  Not to be all 'woe is me my vacation is over,' but although it's only been two days since we landed back in JFK, I find myself re-living the whole thing through the hundreds of photos from the past week.

Not only was it a rich cultural and scenic experience (to say the least), but the food was an experience all on it's own.  Friends who had been to Scotland before I left would tell me about haggis and black pudding and I have to admit I was a little afraid!  What I found instead was that Scottish food (and food found in Scotland) is steeped both with history and flavor!

Feel Good Foodies_Scotland_fish and chips
Lunch at Loch Ness
You couldn't go far without having an opportunity to have some fish & chips, and were they delicious! This super traditional dish is (obviously) always paired with french fries (or as the Scotts call them, chips) and mushy or garden peas.  It's funny how well this trio of foods work together. Couldn't get enough of the crispy crust and buttery fish, Yum!

Fish & Chips spot under Central Station in Glasgow.

This 'grab n' go' hole-in-the-wall was probably the most delicious F&C we had in Scotland!

Stopped at this little gem called Mohr Bread (get it? ; ) on our way to Isle of Skye in the Highlands.

Another traditional food you can find most everywhere are savory pies. Chicken pot pie, macaroni pie, steak pie, lamb pie -- you name it, it probably comes in a pie!  

Port of Siam, Thai, in Edinburgh

Something you probably wouldn't expect in Scotland is how good the Indian food is known to be here. Unfortunately, we didn't end up trying any -- since the spot we were most interested to try in Edinburgh, which was quite a walk from our hotel, was closed on Sunday (once we walked all that way to find that out), a lovely local instead directed us to this INCREDIBLE Thai restaurant.  

Inside Port of Siam

Asparagus & mushroom clouds with coconut rice
(yes, they called them clouds, I was sold!) 

Hands-down the BEST Thai I've ever had in my life.

Another thing I discovered was how beautiful their shopping and dining centers (AKA: malls) are. We dined at Princes Square one night, which was beautiful.  After spending our days in Glasgow pubs (also awesome) at the beginning of our trip, it was nice to change things up and try a different type of ambiance.

Princes Square in Glasgow

Prawn (what they call shrimp) & hazelnut salad

Inside Zizzi at Princes Square in Glasgow
I have to admit the food wasn't mind-blowing at the place we chose (though could have just been a fluke or poor choice on our part), but the whole restaurant and ambiance really was beautiful, and just wish we had more time to try other places.

It just wouldn't be right not to include Scotch Whiskey as a food following this trip. I think it's pretty much common knowledge that the Scotts take pride in their distilleries and single malt Scotch Whiskies (apart from their master-blended cousins).  

Glengoyne distillery just North of Glasgow

I'm proud to say that Scotland made me a bit of a whiskey drinker (dreams really do come true), and that my new favorite is from Glengoyne Distillery just North of Glasgow, one of the most beautiful distilleries in Scotland.

If I had to name my most favorite place in Scotland we stayed, it would be Isle of Skye, in the little harbor town of Portree. Absolutely picturesque, we had a few great meals in the 2-3 days here. Our last night was at the Rosedale Hotel right on the harbor.

Rosedale Hotel Restaurant

Scottish Salmon

I'll leave you with one last photo from Portree and a few more favorites from Isle of Skye : )

Feel Good!