The Hairy Vegetarian in Scotland - The Ghillie Dhu, Edinburgh
On the last night of this leg of the tour, the 18 people in the group I'm traveling with had a dinner arranged by the tour company at a local pub. Local, I guess, as in the same city. It was at least a half hour walk from the hotel. But shockingly it wasn't raining, and the city is incredibly beautiful, so walk we did, through the bustling city streets of amazing architecture, to the Scottish pub, Ghillie Dhu. The building is a very interesting mix of stone, spiral staircases, and modern details. We all sat in several booths, ordered drinks, and soon got served some potato leek soup. We had only heard rumors about the food, that it would be fish. I and the other vegetarian on this leg were assured that they knew to give us something else. However several others were heard complaining to the waitstaff that they didn't eat fish, or were allergic to the shellfish stuffing. I overheard one waiter tell one of the complainers that they couldn't possibly make any more vegetarian dishes since only two had been ordered by the tour company. I felt bad that not eating animals can be such a hassle. But in the end everyone got what they wanted.
My entree was a delicious pastry stuffed with broccoli, carrots, onions, sweet potatoes, artichokes, and just the right amount of tomato sauce. Over the top was what I believe to be what the other restaurant turned into glue - a delicious white sauce. On the side was a pile of, what else, potatoes. I was very happy, especially considering the complaints I heard about the fish.
Dessert was a fantastic cup of cream and tart raspberries. I left thinking that the bulk of the people would have been happier with any restaurant closer to the hotel. On the walk back we took the low road through the beautiful gardens at the foot of the castle.
I will definitely be back to this spectacular city, but probably not to this restaurant.
The Ghillie Dhu is at 2 Rutland St, Edinburgh