Lunch at The Three Chimneys

I pity the restaurant that comes after my visit to the Three Chimneys, I really do. It will be a truly tough act to follow.

Having never dined at such a well-renowned restaurant before, I was unsure what to expect. Reports from my younger brother on the service included utter astonishment (and a mischievous joy) at the fact that the staff, without being in the room to witness your exit, would rush to fold your napkin and place it neatly on the table should you happen to leave your seat to go to the bathroom.

My parents couldn’t deny the quality of the food during their recent visit but described the grouse in less than admirable terms.  My dad however, who rarely offers judgement on anything he eats, praised the whisky parfait as “the best dessert ever”.

I was intrigued to say the least.

Situated on the shores of Lock Dunvegan in the north of the Isle of Skye, the journey to your table is almost as spectacular as the meal itself – providing you’re not the poor soul gripping the steering wheel with white knuckles on the single track road while peering desperately around the next bend to see if that was in fact a large caravan or a rogue sheep you saw approaching.

Excited much?

Walking into the restaurant, a modest 2 storey whitewashed building which at one time served as the village shop, is, as my brother described, like walking into someone’s living room: compact, cosy but by no means cramped. Retaining the character of the old building, the ceilings are low, the wooden beams overhead still visible but the tables are adequately spaced to ensure that you don’t felt like you’re sitting in someone else’s lap.

The service was at times alarmingly attentive to the point where me and my fellow diners had to test it out by each going to the bathroom to see which of us would be lucky enough to have our napkin folded in our absence. None of us did.

But enough of the prelude, bring on the main act: the food! Me and my other half were lucky enough to find something on the menu that we both adored. Our two dining companions were less lucky but opted for the options they were most likely to enjoy and between us we had most of the menu choices covered. There is however probably little that I can say about the food at the Three Chimneys that hasn’t already been said. As expected, everything was perfectly flavoured, perfectly balanced and perfectly presented.

My starter: Andy Race smoked haddie and ham terrine with Brunigill Farm quail egg, chicory, syboes, apple, orange and nasturtium
Starter no. 2: Dunsyre blue cheese, nectarine and pumpkin seed salad with mustard leaves, shallot and thyme relish
Starter no. 3: Individual Blackface lambs haggis with neeps, greens and peaty gravy
My main: pan fried Mallaig hake with new potatoes, local summer vegetables, razor clam and tarragon butter
Main no. 2: pot roast crown of Perthshire wood pigeon with tattie scones, Ayrshire bacon, Highland chanterelles, young leeks, Glendrynoch watercress
Main no. 3: Baked beetroot, pearl barley and broad beans with Totaig kale and horseradish cream
Dessert: chocolate and blaeberry mousse

if you are on Skye you have to try the Three Chimneys.

With superior food, excellent service and surroundings like few other restaurants, it is simply not to be missed.

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