Thursday, 7 September 2017

Skye Pie Cafe - Isle of Skye (Scottish Highlands and Inner Hebrides)

The Isle of Skye is possibly one of the most picturesque places I have ever been to in my life. It makes me swell with pride that this beautiful isle is a part of our country and my Scottish heritage. Skye, in recent years, has also become a very popular place to live in the Highlands and Hebrides. The Skye bridge has brought ease of access to the mainland and gives its occupants that feeling of being remote, but not too remote. With such beautiful scenery, a growing population and access to fresh fish of the surrounding seas, Skye has also scene an influx of fine dining restaurants.

Our visit to Skye was to be a fleeting one, we aimed to see as much in one day as possible. Perhaps in the future we will return for at least a week (as we could definitely keep ourselves occupied here a week at least), but on this visit we needed somewhere to eat midday that was a little more informal (and a little cheaper as we were on a budget). I didn’t want to fall in to any tourist traps, as the population has grown so has the tour buses, there are plenty of tourist looking traps in the main town of Portree. I was lucky to find the Cafe Arriba last time but on researching the places to eat again I was struggling to find many more recommendations in Portree. I cast my net a little further and found Skye Pie Cafe.

Skye Beach
Skye Pie Cafe is along one of the main tourist routes, it’s just after Bridal Veil Falls and the Old Man of Storr is within eyeshot. The reviews are highly praising, with this and its location you may be best to try and book if you can. We were lucky on the day and managed to find a table in one of the dining rooms, but there were people sat outside on benches balancing pies on their knees due to limited space inside.

View out to sea near the cafe
Skye Pie Cafe is housed in an old country house, it’s beautiful to look at and the décor inside is just as quaint. Inside you will find handcrafted pieces, such as the bicycle wheels on the ceiling with note hanging down, vintage kitchenalia and toys with mismatched furniture.

The staff are friendly and welcoming (despite being ridiculously run off their feet). Our needs could not have been met more and we felt well attended to but also well left alone when we wanted to be too. There are a lot of tourists from Eastern Asia in Scotland (around the time we visited) and I heard a request for something a little more Eastern to eat, to which the staff replied they could stir fry some vegetables and this was gladly accepted, with no extra fuss from the staff.

The pies change regularly dependent on season and there are both savoury and sweet pies on the menu with a variety of sides to choose from too. The pies are made onsite and use local ingredients where possible. The restaurant is run by a couple who have a wealth of hospitality and chef experience between them, rest assured you’re in good hands dining here.

On the day we visited Highland Beef Pie and Lamb and Mint Pie were both on the menu. We opted to share our pies between us, to get the best of both worlds, and also shared a side of wedges.

The pastry on the pies was exceptional with a thick crust to keep the filling neatly compacted inside. It’s fair to say that just the pie alone would had left us full, but we’re too greedy to keep to pies only.

The wedges were some of the best wedges of my life, so crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. They were like a hybrid of wedges and roast potatoes. The house made tomato sauce was excellent too, don’t tell them I told you this, but the secret ingredient is apples!

When we return to Skye, due to the experience in the café, I will definitely be looking at the availability of the guest house. It’s a perfect location on the island and if the customer service matches the café I would have no doubt we’d have a wonderful time here.

I’m trying hard to be factual and objective about Pie in the Skye, however, it will always hold a fondness in my heart as it was the first place we stopped after this happened…

No comments: