Boisdale of Belgravia: not just for foodies and down in the dumps Scots

By | Category: Travel rumblings, Travel tips & opinions

Wondering where Andy Murray went to drown his sorrows following his defeat by Federer, in the Wimbledon final? Here at CD-Traveller towers we’re not sure of the specifics, but the Scot – whose startling skill made the Swiss maestro sweat last Sunday – could have and should have made a beeline for the Boisdale of Belgravia.

Situated on Eccleston Street, an area that seems to go unappreciated by visitors and residents alike, Boisdale acts as an oasis away from the hustle and bustle of nearby Victoria station. Put simply this fabulous Scottish themed restaurant run by Ranald Macdonald, that’s often referred to as the unofficial Scottish embassy in London, is a pure pleasure drome and thus the perfect place for Murray to forget his misery.

There are six places to eat and drink – the clubby Back bar, richly panelled Jacobite room, Auld restaurant, Cigar Terrace (a top spot for smokers to beat the ban in style), charming courtyard garden with its retractable roof for, weather permitting, al fresco dining and, my favourite, the Macdonald Bar which manages to be large yet intimate, buzzy but private.

The look is all deep red and dark green walls, mahogany and mounted stags’ heads while sweet staff wearing Macdonald tartan skirts will cluck and fuss over you. Once seated at your table in – what else? – a tartan upholstered chair, treats – such as warm buttered roles – begin arriving immediately for you to munch on, while perusing the menu. Food is sophisticated but scrumptious. Expect Scotland at its best: think Loch Ryan oysters, Hebridean crab, haggis, Aberdeen angus aged steaks –  said by Square Meal to be “incredible” –  and smoked salmon.

For a bit of stomach lining, I went for a girlie starter of asparagus that came in a truffle butter and hollandaise sauce so delicious, I lapped it up like a kitten. Meanwhile my dining companion purred with pleasure over her Hebridean handpicked crab, accompanied by spiced avocado and melba toast (£12.50). As for mains, we can recommend the Dover sole served with buttered new potatoes (£29.50) and the filo pastry parcel of chestnut & oyster mushrooms, fennel and spinach, poached leeks, black truffle sauce (£14.75) – simply exquisite. And sides such as broccoli, ginger, chilli and garlic (£5) made me aware that cooking can be an art form. For dessert, do try the caramelised Bramley apple flan with15 year old Glenfiddich caramel sauce  and vanilla ice cream (£6.75) – addiction on a plate.

While the Boisdale was busy when we arrived at 7.30pm, it gets more boisterous later on in the evening when the well heeled customers begin to kick back – helped by the outstanding wine and whisky lists, and nightly live jazz that starts at 10pm. Indeed the fantastic musicians whip the wealthy locals into a frenzy well into the wee hours, making the Boisdale one of the hottest places to hangout in Belgravia post midnight.

Of course, this Scottish jazz, cigar and supper club does cost but believe me when I say the venue is worth every penny and sets standards few others match: I left a lot happier than when I arrived. All told, if Andy Murray doesn’t get to dine at the All England club’s Champion dinner next year, he could do far worse than head to the Boisdale of Belgravia for a taste of the high life – and the Highlands.

Need to know
Boisdale of Belgravia
13-15 Eccleston Street, SW1W 9LX
020 7730 6922
Open 12 noon-1am (Mon-Fri); 6pm-1am (Sat)
Transport: Victoria tube/rail

 

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