Restaurants: The Basics

Scotland has a great variety of restaurants, both casual and formal, in both urban and country areas. Overall, food has improved substantially over the past decade, and the country has become a good destination for foodies interested in fresh seasonal and local fare. All major cities have more than a handful of good Scottish and international restaurants to choose from, but some rural pubs are also known for serving fresh hearty meals and scrumptious baked goods. Sandwich shops, tearooms, cafés, and places serving familiar fast foods round out the options.

Along the coasts, and up north in Inverness and Aberdeen, fish and seafood dominate the menus: salmon, shellfish, and whitefish like haddock are among the favorites. Stirling, Edinburgh, and Glasgow are well known for their love of beef, lamb, and venison; Indian, Italian and French restaurants are popular in these regions as well. In Orkney and Shetland and in the Borders and southwest, lamb and seafood are staples. For details, see Eating Out in Travel Smart Scotland.

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