Restaurant Review: Loch Lomond Arms

Dinner at Loch Lomond Arms Hotel was every much as picture-perfect as its wooded lochside setting..

While visiting the small conservation town of Luss by Loch Lomond (situated literally on the ‘bonnie banks’ as the Scottish song goes), you’d be forgiven for thinking you’d stepped back in time. The immaculate cottages, quaint General Store, well-kept gardens and small jetty on the loch have all been perfectly preserved in this charming village, which is only a 40-minute drive from Glasgow.

At the heart of Luss is the Loch Lomond Arms Hotel. Formerly an 18th-century coaching inn, the luxury hotel was given a makeover to become a cosy country gastropub with 15 rooms on-site (self-catering cottages are also available) in 2015.

The interior of the hotel is a mix of modern and traditional. Downstairs the bar, restaurant and library are decorated in a muted palette of Farrow & Ball hues in greens on the part tongue-and- groove walls. The dark wooden floors, tartan curtains, open log-burning fires, mismatched, aged wooden chairs and benches, and an eclectic collection of vintage country-scene artworks make this an ideal spot for a cosy lunch or dinner after a winter walk.

The menu takes full advantage of the fresh, local bounty available from the surrounding natural larder. Fresh vegetables and fruit come from nearby Camstradden garden (the current Laird’s home) while venison is also from the estate and seafood is from, among other places, Loch Fyne. After a wander about Luss, we sat down to enjoy a warming dinner. We chose a spread of seafood to start with – three Loch Fyne oysters, served with fresh lemon and Tabasco (on request). These plump and juicy oysters were fresh and delicious – a perfect dish to whet the appetite. Across the table, the smoked salmon served with capers and crème fraiche was deemed light and moreish.

When it came to choosing mains, nothing says Scotland more than haggis, neeps and tatties. And it’s an ideal dish for a lazy Sunday dinner. The spice from the haggis was well balanced with the smooth mash and sweet turnip, and enhanced with a warming whisky sauce. I opted for Scottish mussels and a side of fries.

The steaming mussels were served in a salty broth which was enlivened with onion and cream. This was eagerly mopped up with slices and buttered bread and the crispy fries once the mussels were finished.

For dessert, we shared a classic pub sweet treat, sticky toffee pudding. The softly steamed sponge was studded with raisins and dates, and served with a caramel sauce that had just the right amount of sweetness.

Loch Lomond Arms Hotel

Main Road, Luss G83 8NY

01436 860420

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