Five of Scotland's freshest seafood restaurants

Scotland is not only blessed with the best produce fresh from the sea, but also with plenty of amazing chefs who know exactly how to cook it.

Published 12th Oct 2016
Updated 13 th Oct 2016

Scotland has over 12,000 km of coastline surrounded by beautiful cold, clear waters that are perfect for all manner of marine life.

The country also has a successful fishing industry, with fish and shellfish caught here being highly sought- after and transported all over the world to be used by the world's top chefs.

Thankfully, you don't have to leave these shores to enjoy the best Scottish seafood, as our own highly rated chefs are perhaps the most skilled at taking advantage of this freshest of produce and presenting it in a way that will truly tantalise your taste buds.

Loch Fyne Oyster Bar

(Clachan, Cairndow, PA26 8BL)


One of the best examples of Scotland's amazing shellfish producers and restaurants has to be the excellent Loch Fyne Oyster Bar, a restaurant which gained massively popularity even when in its original incarnation as a roadside shed in Argyll in the 1980s.

Since transforming an old cow byre at Clachan Farm near the head of Loch Fyne in 1988, it has attracted film stars, politicians, royalty and other visitors from the four corners of the globe.

Pulling in the freshest produce from the nearby Loch Fyne, the Oyster Bar has some of the best (and most unique) oysters available in the UK, fresh water running down from the hill streams run into the sea loch and mix, giving the much-sought after shellfish a slightly less salty, sweet flavour.

The seasonal menu uses the best of the local seafood, including Loch Fyne’s own cured smoked salmon, Tarbert crab, grilled langoustines, smoked haddock chowder and tempura oysters.

You can also stop at the deli on the way out and buy food to enjoy back at home.

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Ninth Wave Restaurant

(Bruach Mhor, Fionnphort, Isle of Mull, PA66 6BL)

Picture: TripAdvisor Traveler

Taking their name from Celtic sea mythology, where the ninth wave is where the “land of other-worldly delights” begins, this restaurant serves not only some of the freshest seafood around but also vegetables and herbs foraged from its own kitchen garden.

Perhaps most importantly, the fact that you’ll be hard pressed to find another restaurant where your waiter and sommelier is also the fisherman who lands the catch of lobster and crab you’ll be served at dinner, really rams home just how seriously this eatery takes sourcing the freshest seafood.

Owner John Lamont is a local fisherman who uses his own little fishing boat Sonsie to sustainably fish in the waters off this small Hebridean island.

Opening is seasonal and only serves dinner (meaning you may have to book in advance) but their changing menu of delights like lobster in nettle ravioli and smoked crab cheesecake speaks volumes for itself.

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(North Pier, Oban, PA34 5QD)

Picture: Twitter

A modern restaurant on the waterfront in Scotland’s seafood capital, Ee-Usk (the word for fish in Gaelic spelt phonetically) is mere metres from the water’s edge with views of Oban Bay, Kerrera and out over to the Isle of Mull.

The Macleod family, with over 25 years experience in the seafood industry, only use the freshest locally caught fish and shellfish, with the latter always delivered to the restaurant alive for freshness.

Their list of fish is as varied as it is delightful, with Halibut, Turbot, Brill, Megrim Lemon and Dover Sole, Ling, Lythe, Hake, Cod, Haddock, Plaice, Monkfish, Gurnard, John Dory, Squid and Octopus, all appearing on the seasonal menu over the course of the year.

With a list of trusted suppliers, you can be sure of the provenance; where you choose the mussels, rope grown by Jack Mcgegor on Easdale, or oysters grown from seed by Judith and Hugo Vajk on Loch Creran.

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Fish Café

(The Pier, Main St, Torbermory, Isle of Mull PA75 6NU)

Picture: TripAdvisor traveler
Picture: TripAdvisor traveler

The awards this terrific little eatery has amassed doesn't give enough of a clue about just how good it is, then the fact that they own their own fishing boat which is tasked specifically with landing their langoustines and lobsters daily, might.

Cousins Jane McDonald and  Liz McGougan delight in the provenance of their seafood with local fishermen supplying them with monkfish, dover sole, cod, halibut, john dory, haddock, plaice, scallops and squid, fresh off the boat.

A process you can watch as the fish are delivered to the pier ready to be served to your plate only two hours later.

The specials board reflects the seasonal nature of their supply with each new dish chosen based on what they've had delivered that day.

As their motto proudly proclaims: "The only thing frozen at the Fish Café is their fishermen"

The Pierhouse Hotel

(Pier House, Appin PA38 4DE)

Perhaps one of the most highly rated hotels and restaurants on this list (seriously, go check out the reviews) the Pierhouse enjoys a sterling reputation for great service and even better food.

Hidden away in the quiet village of Port Appin, Argyll, on the shores of Loch Linnhe, the hotel was originally the residence of the Pier Master.

The stylish in-house restaurant offers stunning panoramic sea views and serves oysters hand-picked from Loch Creran as well as mussels and langoustines harvested from Loch Linnhe and Loch Etive.

Not only do they source the seafood, they also keep their lobsters and crabs mouth-wateringly fresh using creels at the end of their pier (which you can view, subject to the tides).




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