The Glenturret Lalique in Crieff received a second Michelin star at the latest Michelin Guide ceremony on Monday. It joins Restaurant Andrew Fairlie at Gleneagles as having two Michelin stars – the only two Scottish restaurants to do so. Here's what Herald critic Ron Mackenna made of it last year.

Glenturret Lalique Restaurant


LE Tattie Scone, sir, for me, a Frenchman, is really interesting, something new. These lushly accented words are being delivered with a Gallic oomph beneath sparkling Lalilque crystal, across a dazzlingly white table-cloth, in a glorious dining room awash with the wah-wah-wah of Perthshire county chat. And with full tractor beam and twinkly eye contact.

We look down. Uh? Caviar, a sliver of truffle, a wafer of wagyu beef (local of course) on a…doughball? It’s a tattie scone, captain, but not as we know it.

Pop. It’s gone in a salty, beefy, truffly, seductive sensation followed by the unmistakeable flavour of…uh-yeah tattie scone.

Now, I’d feign surprise at this but the scene was set moments before by a doll’s house tuille basket of blooming micro flowers surrounding a luxurious blob of the rising sun and then a Hammer House of Horrors description: blood orange, liver, cocoa.

Eek. We gird, we taste, and phew. It’s the deepest, darkest orange and chocolate aftertaste in town, with a surprising savoury undertone.

And these are just the opening shots in a Highland Scottische of a meal during which the kitchen will dance us relentlessly through sixteen hypnotic dishes and then, just when spirits flag, buttons strain, when those heavy handcrafted chairs are being pushed back, they’ll whip out a wooden box with Harry Potteresque drawers that spring out to reveal, ooh, aah, jewel-like, hand-made-in-there sweets.

And we’ll start eating all over again. If you, like me, were thinking eh, when the Lalique Glenturret here shot out of the Highland Mist to get a Michelin star a few weeks ago then know this: this is not really the standard of a one-star Michelin restaurant. It’s much, much better than that. I’d say two star easily.

The Herald:

And I’ll tell you why. It’s not just those little origami lobsters, one each, folded cardboard, a 3D frippery, that’s no glittery table decoration, but one hundred percent made from the lobster and one hundred percent delicious. Nor is it the tart with spoots or razor clams, so delicate you’d swear they were something else, or the airy fillet of gilt head bream, a layer of shellfish somehow surgically placed between its crisp golden skin and clean white meat.

Nor is it that the kitchen does not get taken out, as so many restaurants do, by that chef’s tank trap of a course: dum, dum, dum: the mains.

Usually impossible to make interesting after the fireworks of the showy-offy warm up courses. Yet in here a crimson fillet of sika deer, caramelised edges, celeriac smoked fragrantly in hay, sugar cubes of black pudding, more tiny cubes of quince and for me, anyway, knock-out leek sweetened on the barbecue.

It clearly says: you have arrived at the pinnacle of the meal.

The desserts? Looking back I think there are three, hard to pick the most engaging, but the maracabai mille-feuille, green coffee, a stack of chocolatey wafers crackling under the fork, refreshing fruits cutting through it all is up there with the very best I’ve had. And I’ve had a few.

Oh, I didn’t even mention the bread: a malted barley sourdough (yawn surely) glazed with honey, served with their own butter, redcurrant vinegar and some witchcrafty smoked stuff that means, having tasted the loaf and then being unable to stop tasting the loaf, Debs and I, a tad embarrassingly, will look up after having finished almost the whole damn thing to hear the super-smooth and engaging young sommelier smile and say: ah, you did well.

Anyway, as I said it’s really none of the above that makes this restaurant’s not inconsiderable £125-a-head bill perhaps even a bit of a bargain. It’s simply because the whole meal, the restaurant itself reeking of high-fashion investment, is just one seamless performance.

It’s like paying all that money for a ticket for Mamma-Mia, or Hamilton, say, and having the whole show take place in your mouth.

Glenturret Lalique Restaurant

Glenturret Distillery


01764 656565

Menu: It’s Scotland’s newest Michelin star restaurant so it’s all locally sourced, plucked from the seas or the fields. Sprinkled with more than a little humour. 5/5

Service: Of the highest standard, full eye-contact, occasional engagingly light chat but they know when to move away and let the food do the talking 5/5

Price: Hard to imagine saying £125 a head is a bargain but in contrast to other Michelin restaurants, considering it’s possibly two-star standard, great value. 5/5

Atmosphere: A high fashion French design house, a Scottish distillery owner, everything hand-picked. Comfortable and cool. 5/5

Food: That sika deer course, the little lobstery things, endless stuff to talk about, even the damn bread, but as a whole it hangs together perfectly. 10/10