The new Innis & Gunn Beer Kitchen at Ashton Lane opened last Friday and my boyfriend and I went along to see what it as like
We went along early to enjoy a drink in the attic bar before our reservation. Attic bar sums up the feel of the place well with lots wood and exposed beams and a skylight in the middle of the ceiling, given light to the circular bar in the centre of the room. The bar was well stocked with lots of beer as you would expect and wine and a few ciders. Around the edge of the room there are a few small tables and places to sit or you can enjoy your drink sitting at the bar. My partner who is a huge fan of the brand enjoyed the new Innis & Gunn Session IPA which I’m told was very nice. I went for a cider. Another Scottish brand Thistly Cross, of whom I am a big fan.
We discovered that you can also take drinks home with you as well as enjoy on site with their growlers. Their Growler station allows customers to choose a beer to take home and enjoy later. The Growlers come in either 1 litre or 2 litres. I never saw the Growler station at Ashton Lane but the option of the growler was there. Does that sound dirty to anyone else? My partner was tempted but we didn’t on this occasion but I’m sure it’ll turn into something purchased (or refilled often).
The attic is a good place for a drink especially before your reservation.
Onto the middle floor. The restaurant is bright and modern with the same wood theme as the attic but lighter. As we had a reservation we were seated quickly but I noticed throughout the night that others were either seated quickly as well or informed when the next available space was. It was a popular venue on its opening day.
As with the attic there were plenty of options to drink and the food menu had a decent selection but we weren’t sure what to order at first since we both received different menus. It turns out one was for the bar and the other the restaurant. The restaurant menu focuses on main meals and the bar menu has a wider selection of starts/small dishes.
To start I went for a glass of wine and the scotch egg and my partner tried the new Table Beer and the savoury haggis donuts. The scotch egg was nice and had a lovely flavour to the meat filling but the outer crust was a bit hard for my liking and made the egg quite crumbly. The drizzle it came with was described as a beery “brewn” sauce. It was sweeter and sticker than your usual brown sauce but complimented the egg well.
I was told that the beer was good and the haggis donuts were amazing. The haggis was lovely but the dough was so soft and sweet which the haggis just cut through perfectly. They may be a bit much for some but if you have a sweet tooth or love both haggis and donuts get these. I will rave about these for a long time. We are planning on going back next month and these will be my starter.
My main meal was the Fish and Chips and my other half ordered the Double the Pig. This consisted of twice cooked pork belly and pork crackling served with a potato cake and seasonal greens. This was a small but tasty dish and we were divided on what part we liked best.
The fish and chips were great. The chips were salted quite a bit which I love but this wont be to everyone’s taste. The fish was cooked perfectly and the batter was very light and crisp however as it was so light it was hard to detect that it was a beer batter.
We forwent on the dessert as we were quite full. We decided to end the evening by trying a drink downstairs on the bottom floor but not before we purchased a tshirt. The have a small selection of merchandise but I think these could sell fast. They were all ready out of medium size tshirts when we got ours.
The lower floor had a darker, more stay for the night feel. It’s not the biggest place, so get there early if you want a booth. It had a lively atmosphere with loud music and you can see where the beer is being brewed which was interesting even for a non-beer drinker. However since I was there and as the saying goes “when in Rome” I did try a couple of drinks. I tried the Table Beer and the Lager IPA. Neither were my type of thing but this is the place for beer lovers.
Go check it out and don’t forget the donuts.