"No love sincerer than the love of food"

Leave a comment

The Adamson … and Springsteen

So we finally made it along to The Adamson in St Andrews…

2014-03-16 13.21.11

As we sat in what B proclaimed was the best seat in the house,  me with a lovely sparkling glass of prosecco and B with very girly cocktail, eating a warm mini baked loaf smothered with tapenade  I asked “Are you in heaven right now? ”   Despite looking pretty pleased with himself B replied “You know that it can’t be heaven without Bruce Springsteen” .  Thirty seconds later Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Secret Garden’ is played through the sound system.  Now that’s what I call service.

The service was actually so good and so intuitive at The Adamson that we began to wonder if our seats were bugged!

There is time for my usual preamble about interior decor and ambiance later  as I am desperate to tell you all about the food first.  Why?  Because it was bloody marvellous that’s why.  Not just a bit good – this was proper 10 out of 10 territory.

At the helm in the kitchen is a man good enough to impress Gregg Wallace and John Torode –  Scott Davies was the runner-up in the 2013 programme ‘Masterchef: the Professionals’.  Scott has created a classic brasserie menu with a modern twist.

I kicked off proceedings with Ham hock, Piccalilli and Toasted Artisan Bread whilst my happy Bruce loving husband ordered Smoked Fishcake in Tartare Sauce.  

2014-03-16 13.37.38

It may seem odd to describe piccalilli as cute but hell it was – I don’t know where they found cauliflower with such dinky little florets.  As well as being cute it was thankfully delicious and complimented the ham hock terrine beautifully.  Often meat terrine’s have the dreaded ‘jelly’  factor which is pretty much guaranteed to put me off.  Not so at The Adamson.  The terrine was  perfectly meaty and jelly free, fantastically seasoned and surprisingly very light.  It really was rather splendid and roughly spread on artisan toast it was heaven indeed.

B’s  fish cake was a very large and round and on first inspection resembled a Scotch egg floating in a lovely creamy capery moat.  I had a little taste and it was absolutely delicious.  This creamy, light and very sophisticated sauce bore little resemblance to the tartare sauce I love to smear all over my scampi and chips – thank goodness.

2014-03-16 13.58.48

Now for the piece de resistance…  I opted for lambs liver with confit new potato, wilted greens and sauce diablo.  Liver is like Marmite – you either love it or you hate it  and I absolutely love it. Often liver is presented a la rustique  – i.e. dumped on the plate with a pile of mash onions and gravy,   but this dish turned liver into a thing of beauty.  Balanced on top of lovely rich greens and  little potatoes with a beautiful rich silky sauce  this dish looked amazing.    Liver overcooked is a terrible thing – grainy and tough.  Liver cooked perfectly is pink inside with a beautiful soft creamy texture.  Needless to say the Liver at the Adamson was cooked to perfection.  Having only ever tasted liver with the standard mash and onions combo, for me the sauce Diablo was the high point.  I have no idea what makes up a sauce Diablo but if I was a betting woman I would guess that paprika and cayenne were key spices in this wonderfully rich, smoky and aromatic  sauce.  It was superbly tasty and complimented the liver so well that I was practically groaning with pleasure  (I am aware of how that sounds but  it was bloody good food).

2014-03-16 13.58.34

B opted for flat iron steak sandwich with onion & peppered mayo & skinny fries. It was a proper blokes portion with the perfect steak nestled in between generous chunks of ciabatta.  Now the whole meal was lovely but the steak was out of this world.  Seriously folks this steak was good.  I often find thin slices of steak are overcooked and chewy.  This happens pretty much 100% of the time I try it and a good proportion of the time in restaurants too. This flat iron steak was pink and melty and tender and seasoned to perfection.

2014-03-16 14.30.24

This may seem strange but the high point of the dessert menu was the addition of sorbet.  Now I love my desserts and unlike most of my friends, I find it almost impossible to bypass this course.  However, dessert no matter how adorable is usually served up with a dollop of guilt on the side and invariably I will mutter all the way home “nice meal but I shouldn’t have had that sticky toffee pudding”.  The guilt will sometimes manage to actually overshadow the pleasure of the meal.  I have often said that every restaurant should offer a guilt free alternative such as fresh fruit with perhaps a twist or sorbet, which is exactly what you can opt for at The Adamson. As well as a guilt laden array of desserts you can choose to have two scoops of sorbet (from local business Luvians) from a selection of flavours: passion fruit, rhubarb, lemon & yogurt and banana.  I chose passion fruit and lemon & yogurt and it was perfect.  The ideal way to end a meal – not too sweet, palate cleansing and best of all free from guilt.

B suffers no such guilt and opted for Creme Brulee which both looked and tasted superb.  You may have learned from previous posts that we have had creme brulee issues in the past and it is always a bit of a spirit test ordering it these days. I am glad to report that The Adamson passed with flying colours.

So it is 10 out of 10 for St Andrews newest kid on the block.  A bright, contemporary restaurant with great service and stellar food.   Can’t wait to visit again.

Find out for yourself :

The Adamson

127 South St, St Andrews KY16 9UH
01334 479191


The Bruery – Microbrewery and Bar

Blog 2014 Hazel (8)

I was delighted (if a little behind the times) to discover recently that David Austin, owner of the fantastic Reuben’s Cafe and Wine Store has launched a brand new Dunfermline venture –  The Bruery  – Microbrewery & Bar.    I have been saying for ages that this man should open up a bar/restaurant and I am so glad that he finally has.

The main magic of the Bruery is going on deep down in the cellar. This is where the De BRUS brewers create their wonderful selection of ales and ciders:

Nut Brown Ale, Blond Ale, IPA India Pale Ale, Scottish Lager and Oatmeal Stout, Traditional Farmhouse Cider and Raspberry Cider

Although I like a drink (well don’t we all!) I am no aficionado and so I was more interested in the food when I visited with B last Saturday evening.  I was soon to discover however that the ale is impossible to ignore at the Bruery – and quite rightly so.

NOTE :  Beautiful soft candlelight meant that I got very few good shots as I tend not to use the flash (a bit off-putting for other diners) and don’t have a lovely posh camera that could overcome such paltry obstacles.

The Bruery is located in a beautiful old town house in the centre of Dunfermline and I was delighted that the interior ticked all the right boxes for me:  heaps of original features, quirky contemporary touches, restored wooden floors, soft lighting and lots of candles.

The menu is very simple and rather clever with dishes created to compliment and often include the de BRUS ales.  There are sharing platters, small plates, mains and a range of flat breads with a tasty variety of toppings.

I kicked off the evening with a Raspberry Cider whilst we were trying to make up our minds and very nice it was too.  Definitely something I will be ordering again.

We finally opted to share Deep Fried Whitebait with Aioli and some bread, oil and balsamic to start.  The bread was thin and warm with a wonderful little crisp to it – delicious for dipping.

Blog 2014 Hazel (7)

I love good presentation and the arrival of the whitebait in a mini frying basket delighted me.  Apart from looking fantastic I can report that these little critters went down a treat.  Alioli is just the best thing to go with whitebait but it was just as well we were both eating it otherwise the chances of a snog at the end of the date would have been slim!

Most of the main courses have an underlying ale theme.  I chose the De BRUS Nut Brown Ale Stew with Mash and Veg and B opted for the Blond Ale Battered Fish with Pea Puree and Chips.  The stew was beautifully simple and most importantly cooked to perfection.  The taste of the ale really shone through the ever so tender meat, it really was sublime.  Tatties and veg may seem basic, but often it is the simplest things that ruin a meal.  Not so here, luxurious creamy mash made this  real treat.

Muttering of a wholly positive nature came from the husband camp as he chowed down on beautifully presented fish and chips.  The batter was crisp and the fish was soft, flaky and moist and the chips were huge (in a very very good way).  It is safe to say I was pretty impressed.

I finished our meal with possibly the largest slice of Ginger Cheesecake I have ever seen, served with a beautifully delicate ginger sorbet whilst B opted for his old favourite – Crème Brulee.  Thankfully  The Bruery know how to make a creme brulee so there was no need to relive Brulee Gate 2010.  Brulee Gate is another story for another day involving another Dunfermline restaurant.

We had such a fabulous evening at The Bruery.  It has a lovely atmosphere, the interior was perfect, the staff attentive and best of all the food was cracking!

Well done Mr Austin and all of your team.  It seems you have done it again.

Care to go for a hat trick?

The Bruery, Canmore Street Dunfermline, 01383 747757,