Achray House, St Fillans, Perthshire Staycation

achray house breakfast view

Scottish foodie retreat in tranquil surroundings

Set beside the eastern edge of Loch Earn in Perthshire is the pretty village of St Fillans. Mrs Foodie has fond memories of holidaying here as a child so she was very happy when we were invited to spend a night at Achray House, a restaurant with rooms, to experience the skills of Chef Patron, Ryan McCutcheon. Ryan has worked in several of Scotland’s most prestigious hotels including Gleneagles, Cromlix, Knockinaam Lodge and Chez Roux at Greywalls, so we were excited to see what would be served.

achray house with bus stop

As well as winning Best Hotel & Restaurant 2018 from LUX Life Magazine, it has also been ranked one of the best small hotels in Perthshire.

Within Achray House you can dine with views of Loch Earn and the village of St Fillans. There is a real fire to warm beside after a long walk, and you can venture out to the patio on warmer days.

achray house exterior panorama

There is a fine dining restaurant with a seven-course tasting menu, or opt for a more relaxed dinner with tasty dishes such as Shetland mussels and Loch Duart Salmon and Scottish cheeses on offer. If fine dining isn’t for you there is also a more regular menu in the bar.

achray house loch earn

 

Bedroom

A large and airy room with plenty of space including a separate seating area with another TV and a large walk-in cupboard as well as a hospitality tray, Alexa next to the bed for playing music perhaps and there were even some binoculars and a book on birds.

achray house bedroom panorama 2

achray house bedroom

achray house coffee

achray house birds and binoculars

achray house bedroom view
Look at that view, this is genuinely the view from our bedroom window.
achray house tea
And this is the view from the little side room where there’s a TV and couch



Bathroom

achray house bathroom

A great big bath with a separate raindrop shower and Mrs Foodie’s favourite toiletries, ‘After the Rain’ by Arran.

Dinner

With such a stunning location and great weather on our visit, it would have been rude to not sit out on the terrace and enjoy a pre-dinner drink.

achray house terrace

achray house gin view

The Lochview Restaurant at Achray House has two AA rosettes which mean that AA Inspectors have judged this to be an excellent restaurant that aims for and achieves higher standards and better consistency. You don’t have to be a resident to dine at Achray House, although you probably will want to stay so you can enjoy their range of wines. Dining is available Monday – Sunday, 12:00-20:30. You can book online, phone 01764 685320 or email admin@achrayhouse.com.

achray house bar restaurant

achray house restaurant

The 5-course Land meets Sea tasting menu is £39 per person with paired drinks an additional £29.

achray house lochview restaurant menu

First on the menu was the 28-day aged beef tartare, oyster emulsion, charred homemade rye bread. We love a good tartare and this was paired with Les Vignes de l’Eglise Merlot Grenache, which has a sort of raspberry chocolate aroma – a bit like a Ruffle bar! Mildly dry cherry and black currant taste.

achray house beef tartare
28-day aged beef tartare, oyster emulsion, charred homemade rye bread

Next up was a rich Scottish Seafood Bouillabaise paired with Castelo de Mar, a Spanish Albarino, that has a peachy aroma and taste. Crisp. Acidic. Refreshing.

achray house bouillabasse 2
Scottish Seafood Bouillabaisse
achray house bouillabasse 2
Scottish Seafood Bouillabasse

Our third course was Slow-braised Ayrshire Pork Cheek, Celeriac and Samphire. Mouthwateringly delicious pork meat with a smattering of crackling and the unusual addition of samphire. Paired with Mont Rocher Viognier from France. Tropical, stone fruit aromas with a rich taste and soft acidity.

achray house pork cheek
Slow-braised Ayrshire Pork Cheek, Celeriac and Samphire

Our fourth course was a perfectly cooked Pan Roast Turbot, Sea Vegetables, Crisp Wild Rice and Nori Jus. Paired with Bodegas Ondarre Rioja from Spain, with an aroma of leather-bound books and cassis, and a jammy dark fruit taste.

achray house turbot
Pan Roast Turbot, Sea Vegetables, Crisp Wild Rice and Nori Jus

Our last dish was Sea Buckthorn Mousse, Gin Soaked Blackberries, Basil paired with Lind and Lime Gin, apple and Fever-Tree Mediterranean tonic rather than sweet wine. We feel that given sea buckthorn grows in Scotland it’s under-represented on Scottish menus so it was good to see it here, in this tart, fruity dessert that had the unusual addition of fresh basil.

achray house dessert
Sea Buckthorn Mousse, Gin Soaked Blackberries, Basil

Breakfast

achray house breakfast menu

Not a bad way to start your day, eh?

achray house egg royale

We had this oozing eggs Benedict.

achray house full breakfast

And a really tasty full Scottish fry up.

 

Verdict

A really well-run food destination hotel. We thought that our meal was similar in style to what you get at 111 by Nico / Modou in Glasgow so it’s multiple courses of fine dining but without significant expense. 4 paired wines and a gin for £39 is pretty good value too. The views looking out onto the loch and mountains were good too, for dinner, breakfast and from our bedroom, which was spacious and well equipped. The bath and shower were also both great and we think it important to have a bath as there is a fair amount of walking that can be done on the former railway line, now a designated walking route,  behind the hotel. Checking in and out was easy, the only issue was that check-in didn’t start until 4 pm but overall, this is definitely somewhere to escape to for walks, relaxation and great food. Mrs Foodie was also glad to see that the village she spent summers in as a child hadn’t lost any of its charm.

If you are still planning a staycation this year or looking for a short break in Scotland then Achray House should be on your list to consider due to its beautiful location that is easier to reach than the Highlands. Achray House makes a fantastic base for visiting towns such as Crieff, Comrie, Killin, Aberfeldy etc. (It‘s also just within the boundaries of Loch Lomond & Trossachs National Park). Getting there by car is easy, at around a 90-minute drive from Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dundee. It could also make a good place to break up your journey if you are heading further north to the Highlands and islands or onto the North Coast 500.

achray house conservatory

loch earn achray house beach

Video

What to do near to Achray House, St Fillans

There are lots of things to see and do near to St Fillans.

Glenturret Distillery

Doune Castle

Loch Earn Water Sports Centre

Cultybraggan Camp

Stirling Gin

McQueen Gin

Drummond Gardens

TL;DR

+ Excellent food
+ Big bath and raindrop shower
+ Arran Aromatics ‘After the rain’ toiletries
+ Great view from the bedroom and restaurant
+ Impressive gin selection
+ Parking right outside

– Late 4 pm check-in

Website

Achray House website

Where

Achray House
St Fillans
PH6 2NF

 

AA rosette Achray House

AA breakfast award

Transport

Click here for Traveline Scotland Journey Planner

For those with Electric Vehicles, they have an EV charging point in co-operation with BP Chargemaster Pulse (previously Polar) 7.2kW type 2. This will charge an EV with a 40kW battery in 4-6 hours.

Reservations

Book online HERE


 

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Fred purr of honour

Disclaimer: we received a complimentary DBB stay at Achray House.

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Mrs Foodie aka Emma loves to snuggle with Fred and Cleo, sleep and read.

Can be found with gin or a pint in hand.

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