Scottish Restaurant Awards Winners 2011

The Scottish Restaurant Awards 2011 in association with 5pm.co.uk and Business 7 were held last night at Glasgow Science Centre. These awards, now in their fourth year, acknowledge the outstanding creativity, customer service and top quality dining that’s on offer throughout Scotland.

As dining out is a big part of life in Scotland, the restaurant trade is a vital component in the essence of Scottish life, as both an employer and as a service provider. Whether it’s fine dining or good value family meals, these awards celebrate and reward Scotland's very best restaurants in their field across sixteen categories. The winners whether they are the restaurants, restaurateurs or chefs they all are setting the standards for others in the industry to aspire to.

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Winner: Smiths of Uddingston

Smith’s of Uddingston is the worthy winner of both ‘Best Urban Restaurant of the Year’ and ‘Restaurant of the Year’. A high quality French style menu is enjoyed in a relaxing atmosphere in this rustic bistro.

Michael Smith opened the restaurant in 1999 and his dishes and wine choices are heavily influenced by his time spent working in France. Michael believes in using great Scottish ingredients and keeping dishes simple, well balanced and reasonably priced.

Winner: Cucina @ Missoni

Cucina, in the heart of Hotel Missoni in Edinburgh, is a vibrant, bustling restaurant that uses the freshest seasonal ingredients and hearty flavours to create authentic modern cooking inspired by classic Italian cuisine.

Cucina offers a menu of fresh, seasonal and authentic Italian dishes such as Barolo & Castelmagno risotto, seabass baked with a salt crust and roast rabbit served with polenta & radicchio. Cucina is a deserved winner of ‘Best Italian Restaurant of the Year’.

Winner: Balbir’s

Balbir’s restaurant in Glasgow isn’t your average Indian restaurant. The first restaurant in Scotland to be awarded both the 'Healthy Living' award and the 'Eat Safe' food certificate from the UK government’s Food Standards agency, it uses cholesterol-free rapeseed oil instead of ghee in its dishes giving you exceptionally tasty yet healthy Indian plates.

Excellent and friendly service mixed with generous and flavorsome dishes and elegant surroundings, won Balbir’s “Best Indian Restaurant of the Year”.

Winner: See Woo

See Woo, hidden away in Glasgow’s Hamiltonhill area, offers traditional Cantonese and Pekinese cooking and has won this year’s ‘Best Oriental Restaurant of the Year’ against stiff competition.

With a wide-ranging menu, See Woo is extremely popular with Glasgow’s Chinese community and offers everything from Shark Fin soup and sautéed lobster to Peking duck. The restaurant specialises in fresh seafood, which visitors can choose from purpose built water tanks.

Winner: West Brewery

West Brewery is housed in a converted carpet factory overlooking Glasgow Green which by day is an open and airy space but at night is warm and cosy.

A locally sourced menu, which takes inspiration from its German brewing techniques, it is a proud Scottish and German fusion that uses natural ingredients in a simple yet appetising way. West Brewery is the ideal family restaurant and a worthy winner of the award ‘Best Family Restaurant of the Year’.

Winner: Neil Forbes

Neil Forbes has won this year’s coveted award of ‘Chef of the Year’. Neil is extremely passionate and views cooking not as a job but as a way of life. Over his 24 year career, he’s cooked all over the globe but his love of local ingredients brought him back to Scotland. Neil’s worked in such high-regarded restaurants as The Peat Inn and Kinnaird House and with world-renowned chefs Michael Roux and Raymond Blanc.

Neil’s aim in every dish he creates is to provide food that’s “sourced well, seasoned well, cooked properly and presented simply” and this philosophy has deservedly won him ‘Chef of the Year’.

Winner: Restaurant Martin Wishart

Opened in 1999, Martin Wishart’s self-titled restaurant is located in Edinburgh’s historic Port of Leith and has built a reputation as one of the as one of the UK’s most acclaimed dining venues. This Scottish Restaurant Award for ‘Fine Dining Experience of the Year’ sits well with the restaurant’s Michelin star, 4 AA rosettes and a score of 8/10 in the Good Food Guide. As Gordon Ramsay says, Martin Wishart’s food “delivers pure flavour”.

Winner: Stravaigin

Recently refurbished, the rustic and informal Stravaigin on Gibson Street in the west end of Glasgow, has won ‘Best Pub Grub of the Year’. A cosy and friendly atmosphere, the pub grub lives up to its motto ‘think global, eat local’. While Stravaigin’s herbs may come from Arran, their pork from Ayrshire and their venison from Galloway, these ingredients go into dishes inspired by Spain, Vietnam, Bali or indeed Arbroath.

Stravaigin often has several menus running but representative dishes include a smoked haddock rarebit served with Ramsay’s bacon and a mussel and leek fricassee and wholegrain mustard cream.

Winner: Isle of Eriska

Headed up by chef Robert MacPherson, Isle of Eriska in Benderloch, Argyll, has won ‘Best Hotel Restaurant of the Year’.

Focusing on fresh, local and seasonal produce Robert has built up great relationships with local suppliers to ensure top quality local produce is always used in his dishes

Winner: Two Fat Ladies at The Buttery

‘Best Customer Service of the Year’ goes to Two Fat Ladies at The Buttery - one of Glasgow’s oldest, most enduring and celebrated restaurants and well known for its relaxed atmosphere and unique interior. Newly restored by the Two Fat Ladies team, it retains these features and team them with the excellent dining to be expected.

Outstanding seafood is of course a strong feature on the menu, but there are also plenty of meat and vegetarian options. The menus vary according to season and availability, but dishes to look out for include a game terrine with apple and cider chutney, the monkfish, tomato and chorizo stew and the famous Two Fats’ sticky toffee pudding.

Winner: Three Chimney’s

Perhaps the most remote of all the winners, the Three Chimney’s on the shore of Loch Dunvegan on Skye has won ‘Best Rural Restaurant of the Year’. The restaurant is housed in the original crofter’s cottage and has received rave reviews from around the world with the New York Times describing it as “the French Laundry of Scotland”.

The Three Chimney’s dishes are creative, modern and exciting in concept but with a traditional twist. Great flavour, fine cooking and delicious texture won the restaurant the title this year and the food entirely reflects its location with everything from its white fish and shellfish sourced from Skye’s rocky shore to local Skye lamb and beef.

Winner: Smiths of Uddingston

Smith’s of Uddingston is the worthy winner of both ‘Best Urban Restaurant of the Year’ and ‘Restaurant of the Year’. A high quality French style menu is enjoyed in a relaxing atmosphere in this rustic bistro.

Michael Smith opened the restaurant in 1999 and his dishes and wine choices are heavily influenced by his time spent working in France. Michael believes in using great Scottish ingredients and keeping dishes simple, well balanced and reasonably priced.

Winner: Loch Leven Seafood Café

Situated in the west coast in the Highlands of Scotland, Loch Leven Seafood Café has won the highly competitive title of ‘Seafood Restaurant of the Year’. It provides high quality seafood at reasonable prices and its ‘Shellfish Platter’ has become infamous with seafood lovers.

Barry Moran, Head Chef at Loch Leven, believes in letting the natural product take centre stage and all live seafood is kept in an adjoining dispatch centre ensuring visitors are always receiving the freshest food.

Winner: Castle Terrace

Castle Terrace restaurant opened its doors in July 2010 with Chef Dominic Jack at the helm. Nestled underneath Edinburgh Castle in the heart of the old town, the restaurant has quickly established itself as Edinburgh’s favourite new addition to the city’s dining scene. This reputation is well deserved has won it the year’s award for “Newcomer of the Year”.

Chef patron, Dominic Jack uses his expertise and passion to showcase the finest local and seasonal Scottish produce in a relaxed yet refined atmosphere and his experience is evident with each dish executed to perfection.

Download the press pack

The press pack consists of a zip archive containing event press release, winners press release, event logo and sponsors logos.

Also included are photos of each of the category winners receiving their award.

Download press pack [22mb]