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Best gastro pubs with rooms: The Bridge Inn, Ratho, Scotland

Our review of The Bridge Inn, Ratho, near Edinburgh, where you can expect understated flair in both the rooms and the food, made with veg grown in their walled kitchen garden.

The 18th-century Bridge Inn, in the village of Ratho on the Union canal is just a caber’s toss from Edinburgh. The field-to-plate concept is an easy one for owners Graham and Rachel Bucknall, who breed pigs and grow vegetables and herbs in the walled kitchen garden.

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What to eat In season, you can tuck into partridge, pheasant, rabbit and venison. Starters include pulled pork and apple terrine with red cabbage, apple and mustardslaw, salt-baked crispbreads and cider jellies. Mains include Ardgay venison loin and haunch boudin with kale, clotted cream mash and port jus.

Star suppliers From Ardgay Game and John Gilmour Butchers, to fishmongers George Campbell & Sons, all meat and fish are from Scotland.

The booze You can sink a gluten-free pint of Daura, cask ales such as Dark Island from Orkney and a range of guest ales. The wine list features gems including an Austrian veltliner. Finish with a ‘stickie’ (dessert wine or port) such as a Jerome Quiot Muscat (£3.35) or a dram in front of the roaring fire. Malts on offer include a smoky 10-year-old Laphroaig (£2.90).

The bed Bijoux Bonnington, Baird, Bryce and Burke are cosy rooms, all with views. Bonnington has an ornate four-poster bed. Baird has a slipper bath, Bryce a brass bed and Burke is in chic cream-and-striped country style.

The breakfast Free-range chickens and ducks from Ratho Hall lay the eggs for breakfast. The full Scottish includes haggis, Stornoway black pudding, a tattie scone and Ratho Hall sausages. Or drizzle honey over a bowl of creamy porridge.

The bill Double rooms from £90 b&b, mains from £11. (bridgeinn.com)

Written October 2015


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