My wife and I stay on the Island and had visited the Craigmore Tearoom on a number of occasions before it's recent change of ownership.
Formerly a very good tearoom offering great lunches and the usual array of cakes and scones, I was intrigued to visit the new "Pier at Craigmore bistro" which also offered evening meals. The premises are not licensed but if you wish to enjoy a drink with your meal they do allow dinners to bring their own and don't charge corkage.
Firstly the tearoom had far too many tables squeezed into the relatively small space, no change here im afraid, an amazing setting with great views but still too many tables.
For our first course my wife had a mackerel salad which was fine, and I ordered a haddock and prawn morney which although a good sized portion was very salty, prawns were okay but the smoked haddock was FULL of bones and inedible. We're not ones to complain so ate the prawns and left the fish. When the female member of staff collected the plates, I commented about the bones and was surprised by her reply of, "okay, thank you" before heading to the safety of the kitchen.
Main dishes my wife had ordered the Mushroom Stroganoff, A stroganoff it was not !.....there was no creamy sauce made with butter and soured cream but instead a rich tomato sauce with whatever vegetables they had available including the occasional mushroom. Believe it or not it was quite nice, but definitely not a Stroganoff.
I opted for the Chicken breast stuffed with black pudding which arrived with nicely cooked broccoli, cauliflower and new potatoes, a sauce would have been nice but there again the menu didn't say it would come with a sauce, so perhaps I should have asked.
On clearing the table I asked the same female member of staff if I could see the dessert menu which seemed to surprise her more that just a little. She again scurryed off to the kitchen only to return a short time later with the offer of a fruit sorbet or the option of choosing a cake or scone from the open display......I don't think they do desserts.
Overall we did enjoy our evening but I can only assume that the new kitchen and waiting staff lack the knowledge or experience required to run a successful "Bistro".
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