After a wee stop at the Snack Shack, the main dining event of our mystery tour to Loch Lomond and Argyll was a stop at the George Hotel in Inveraray. I’m not at all familiar with this part of the world so I wasn’t sure what to expect, although mentions of awards on various signs coupled with a full lunchtime dining room seemed potentially promising.
Under the expert guidance of Derek Munn, actor and bon viveur currently working for Stravaigin Scotland, a local tour company, we were a party of eight in total. We were assembled to bid a jolly farewell to Jane, who had come up with the idea of going on this mystery tour.
The George is a lovely historical pub setting with rooms attached. It was clear from a quick look at the menu that it served an impressive array of local produce. Further consideration made decisions difficult as there was much to choose from.
I eventually settled upon the broccoli and stilton soup to start followed by the smoked salmon brioche roll. And having taken a big breath, here’s what everyone else had: Jane started with a selection of crostini followed by sausage and mash; June ate scallops then smoked hake; Justine had dressed crab and fish n chips; Kerry started with spring rolls then had steak pie for main; Lorna ate scallops also then fish n chips; Lesley joined Kerry in eating spring rolls then followed Justine and Lorna in having the fish n chips; and Derek started with a goat’s cheese salad then followed with haggis, neeps and tatties. Whew.
Service was prompt throughout. Starters quickly appeared and universally attracted approbation. I think Justine’s crab dish was the winner, with Derek’s beautifully toasted goat’s cheese salad a close second. My soup was very good, too, and the accompanying bread had a good tight crumb.
Jane was the main course winner as she proclaimed her sausage and mash the best she’d ever had. She thought my salmon roll looked boring, but I was really pleased with it. Combining hot and cold smoked salmon atop cream cheese in a fresh brioche bun, it was a sandwich of distinction and a great showcase of excellent local produce. The fish in the fish n chips was huge, the hake dish was polished off appreciatively, and Kerry’s steak pie looked great, too.
We had miles to go before we slept, so we didn’t tarry much longer, but we were all very impressed.
So overall, I’d be glad to recommend Inveraray’s George Hotel to you. Rarely have I seen a place of this type, serving a menu this broad, get things so spot on. There was barely a weak dish across our comprehensive test of their menu. Make sure to visit if and when you’re in this beautiful part of the world.
Blythe scores the George Hotel
4.5/5 for food
3.5/5 for presentation
4/5 for setting
3.5/5 for service
giving an overall 15.5/20
Today’s questers were: Jane, June, Justine, Kerry, Lorna, Lesley, Derek, Blythe
We ate: dressed crab, spring rolls, scallops, crostini, goat’s cheese salad, broccoli and stilton soup; fish n chips, steak pie and chips, sausage and mash, smoked salmon brioche, haggis, neeps and tatties, smoked hake and mash
We drank: Irn Brus, sparkly water, water, Fyne Ale’s Highlander
We wore: kilt, action footwear (7)
Total bill: £155
Address: Main Street East, Inveraray, PA32 8TT