In the past dinner out with my little sister has consisted of us knocking back the bubbly and her skipping out the restaurant swinging her handbag above her head. Determined to make our finishing schools proud, we have now adopted roles as dainty ladies and now enjoy a quiet(ish) meal together.
After hearing about The North Port’s recent extra Rosette, and being the inquisitive sisters we are, we set off one evening as we were well overdue a visit!
As we got shown to our table the first thing we noticed was how busy the restaurant was for a Wednesday night. A restaurant being full midweek in a small city like ours can only mean one thing – good food and we couldn’t wait to try it!
We were unsure about what wine to choose so as we scanned the drinks menu we ordered a couple of glasses of Prosecco as indecisiveness is thirsty work!
Due to spending part of my twenties as Lambrini loyal, I greatly appreciated the wine advice from our waitress.
Luckily, before another glass needed to be ordered our waitress saved the day by giving us a detailed breakdown on the best available wines for our own preferences. Due to spending part of my twenties as Lambrini loyal, I greatly appreciated this advice especially with the end result of the sweet Italian Pinot Grigio Blush.
My sister can also second that with her recommended choice of the delicious New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc which will end up needing a restraining order from her, due to her continuous professions of love for it.
To begin we were served homemade granary bread with a carrot and pumpkin seed sauce, that we shamelessly wolfed down before our waitress had a chance to tell us what was in it.
As seafood lovers, my sister and I ended up selecting the same starters and main courses. I was keen for us to choose different options in order to show off the variety available, however, remembering previous years of fighting over less (a certain Grease Greatest Hits album) I decided just to leave it and we agreed on different desserts.
Despite having made my food choices from the online A La Carte Menu the night before, the Specials menu threw me a curveball and the plaice or scallops debate begun. There is also an excellent Pre-Theatre Menu with two courses for £17.95 and three courses for £20.95!
I eventually chose the scallops and I didn’t regret my choice. These delicate packages of seafood excellence were cleverly partnered with tender pork belly and beetroot. This was the perfect dish to prepare our famished taste buds for the highly anticipated main course.
The Scrabster monkfish main course with pork belly, turnips and broccoli excelled in both presentation and taste. I wanted every mouthful to last forever. On my first visit to the restaurant years ago I declared that the starter was the best fish course I had ever had and this time round the main course was even better! Having read the excellent reviews previously about their rib eye steak and pheasant, I was tempted to sway from my usual choice of the fish however I am glad that I stuck to what I know best.
After enjoying such wonderful courses, it would have been madness to not order dessert!
After enjoying such wonderful courses, it would have been madness to not order dessert and I’m sure if we didn’t we would have regretted it for a long time. My sister chose the oat parfait served with Windswept Weizen syrup and an oat wafer which was so good it caused her to stop mid-gossip and give her wine glass a rest.
As a chocolate connoisseur it seemed rude not to choose the milk chocolate ganache that I couldn’t get out of my mind after first spotting it on the menu. After the first taste of this brown butter and hazelnut combination my sweet tooth was in love and I quickly demolished the rest in case my sister asked for a bite.
For the evening’s finale of impeccable locally supplied cuisine we chose gin as I was curious to sample their own gin and we had accidentally drank all their wine! The restaurant’s own gin is called A’Gin and it is made by chef Andrew, Chrissy and Simon at the Persie distillery in Glenshee. The botanicals of lemon balm, nettles and sorrel were foraged in and around Perth by the creators and it’s sold at £30 a bottle within the restaurant. Their hard efforts have paid off with the end result of this refreshing gin and if you’re a gin lover then get yourself a bottle and celebrate - it’s nearly the weekend after all!
The restaurant has been opened since July 2014 and is run by Andrew and Karen. Andrew is in charge of the kitchen with Karen being at the front of house. Alongside them, they have a team of highly knowledgeable waiting staff who know the menu inside out and have excellent recommendations if you’re struggling over what to choose. For special occasions and/or larger parties up to sixteen guests there is the recently refurbished Tay Room which provides private dining and personalised menus to accommodate all preferences.
Before our visit I had the most hellish morning with my car being crashed into and my face was feeling numb from getting a filling, so I was feeling a bit fed up, but after our flawless evening of delicious food and excellent service I was struggling to hide my smile and even managed to forget about my hefty dentist bill!
There’s such a relaxing and romantic atmosphere contained within The North Port that it would be impossible not to unwind and enjoy yourself.
I know from speaking to Andrew that The North Port team are delighted to have received a second rosette last October, but what I find most shocking is they didn’t receive it sooner!
Whatever the reason for your visit, whether it’s to celebrate with close ones, fall in love, impress or simply to enjoy a good meal, then definitely make this your port of call.
Find out more about The North Port Restaurant in our directory >
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