Dundee Culinary Guide: Discover the Best Foods & Dishes in Scotland’s Coastal Gem (2024)
Hungry In Dundee? Worry not since we have got you all covered.
Welcome to Dundee, an enchanting city in Scotland that takes people on a delightful journey of culinary exploration. With this article, let’s embark on a mouthwatering journey through Dundee’s food scene and a variety of coastal food scenes. This gastronomic adventure will be like none other. From the bustling seafood markets along the waterfront to the cozy family-owned eateries tucked away in charming neighborhoods, Dundee has it all.
When in Dundee, picture yourself at the vibrant waterfront with the aroma of freshly caught seafood. Dundee isn’t just another place in Scotland but a city home to flavors, cultural fusion, and taste of East Coastal cuisine. Every corner of the city has something, either a bustling market, a hidden bistro, or something other.
Are you ready to savor the tastes, textures, and tales of Dundee? Here are the Best Food and Dishes to try in Dundee. Have a look:
Culinary Adventures in Dundee: Tasting the Flavors of the East Coast
Local Delicacies to Try in Dundee:
1. Dundee Cake
When in Dundee, you cannot go back without trying the Dundee Cake. This local delicacy has an appeal that goes beyond its deliciousness. Dundee Cake is prepared using basic cake ingredients along with ground cinnamon and nutmeg, glace cherries, and blanched almonds. It has a distinctive appearance, with a ring of whole almonds adorning the top in an intricate pattern. Dundee cake is a hallmark of this iconic Scottish treat. It is a popular choice for special occasions and is known for its longevity. This dense cake with a fruit-laden interior and protective layer of almonds is loved by people regardless of their age and preference.
Janet Keller is credited with Dundee cake’s creation in the early 18th century. Presently, this sweet treat is enjoyed as a regional specialty. With specific ingredients and methods, Dundee cake maintains its authentic flavor and appearance.
2. Forfar Bridie
A must-try food item in Dundee, Forfar Bridie is simply delicious. This savory pastry delight comes from Forfar town in Angus. It is often enjoyed as a snack and is a beloved part of Scottish cuisine. Forfar Bridie is a turnover filled with minced beef and onions and seasoned with a generous dash of salt and pepper. What sets it apart from other pasties is the use of a flaky, shortcrust pastry.
Forfar Bridie has a rich, buttery texture and crumbly layers that go well with its meaty fillings. The meat and onion filling is sealed nicely within the pastry casing before cooking. While it originated in Forfar, you can now find Forfar Bridies not only in Forfar itself but also in neighboring areas like Dundee and Angus. So, if you find yourself in Dundee or the Angus region, don’t miss the opportunity to savor a Forfar Bridie.
Haggis is indeed a popular dish in Dundee, as it is throughout Scotland. Haggis is typically a Scottish delicacy and, thus, a must-try. It is made with a combination of minced sheep’s heart, liver, and lungs mixed with a special spice of blend, suet, onions and oatmeal. The mixture is then filled in a sheep’s stomach lining or a synthetic casing, cooked, simmered and served hot.
Haggis has rich and savory flavors but a unique set of ingredients and preparation methods. Due to oats, it gets a pleasant nutty texture, where the seasoning adds robustness to its taste. Haggis is often enjoyed with neeps (mashed turnips) and tatties (mashed potatoes). In Dundee, you’ll find Haggis served in various forms, including as a standalone dish, part of a traditional Scottish breakfast, or incorporated into pies and other recipes.
Whisky, particularly Scotch whisky, is very popular in Dundee. In fact, it is popular throughout Scotland due to the world-renowned whisky production of the region. Dundee, being a part of Scotland, boasts a fair share of whiskey establishments and whisky enthusiasts.
For whiskey lovers, it is easy to find bars and pubs in Dundee. The city features an impressive collection of Scottish whiskies brought here from different distilleries across the country. Savoring a variety of whiskies for their distinct flavor profile, aroma, and character, here is an experience on its own. Dundee is also close to some popular Scottish whisky-producing regions, including Highlands and Speyside. Due to this proximity, the city stands as a convenient starting point for those interested in exploring whisky distilleries and the whisky-making process.
7 Places to Eat in Dundee
1. The D’Arcy Thompson – Pub & Dining Room
A charming pub and dining room, the D’Arcy Thompson is one of the best places to eat in Dundee. Nestled in the heart of Dundee, this facility is named after a renowned biologist and former Dundee University professor. The restaurant offers a unique blend of traditional Scottish hospitality and contemporary flair. A visit here is ideal for enjoying a hearty meal with a refreshing drink. D’Arcy Thompson’s menu features a delectable array of Scottish dishes. Every single thing in their kitchen is prepared using locally sourced ingredients. In addition, their bar boasts a fine selection of whiskies, beers, and cocktails. From a casual evening with friends to a memorable dining experience, D’Arcy Thompson caters to it all.
2. Sol y Sombra Tapas Bar
Sol y Sombra Tapas Bar is a friendly and relaxed eatery in Dundee. This facility is a favorite amongst locals and tourists, all thanks to its mouthwatering Spanish-inspired dishes and easygoing vibes. The eatery boasts tapas, aka small plate options, that are perfect for sharing or enjoying alone. Their popular offering includes classics like patatas bravas and flavorful paellas. In addition, they also have seafood options and a variety of salads. Sol y Sombra boasts a warm and inviting atmosphere. To pair with food, the eatery boasts a selection of wines, cocktails, and non-alcoholic beverages.
3. Collinsons Restaurant
A hidden culinary gem in Dundee, Collinson Restaurant is a place you cannot miss. This restaurant is nestled in Dundee’s heart, offering an intimate dining spot. A visit here takes individuals into a remarkable gastronomic experience. Their menu includes everything from vibrant vegetarian options and fresh seafood to succulent meat and more. Collinson is committed to using locally sourced ingredients to create seasonal and inventive dishes. The restaurant caters to diverse tastes and thus is a locals’ favorite. It is also a perfect place for celebrations, especially romantic dinners, all thanks to its cozy and elegant ambiance. The attentive staff here adds to the overall dining experience.
4. Bridgeview Station Restaurant
Bridgeview Station Restaurant in Dundee is a dining establishment with a view to remember. The restaurant sits right on the waterfront, offering spectacular panoramas of the Tay River and the iconic Tay Railway Bridge. Bridgeview Station is popular for its freshly caught and prepared seafood. Their excellence is in locally sourced salmon and haddock. However, the menu isn’t limited but it goes beyond covering vegetarian options and succulent steaks. With its contemporary yet welcoming ambiance, Bridgeview Station is suitable for both casual lunches and special dinners. Restaurants’ large windows allow guests to enjoy scenic views while having their meals.
5. Porters Bar & Restaurant
A vibrant culinary destination in Dundee, Porters Bar & Restaurant excels in its fusion of traditional and modern flavors. The restaurant serves a diverse menu catering to various palates. A visit here allows food enthusiasts to try classic Scottish dishes prepared with a contemporary twist. The restaurant also boasts international options to suit all tastes. Everything prepared at Porter’s is made using locally sourced ingredients, ensuring the freshest and most flavorful dishes. Besides its food menu, the restaurant also boasts a well-stocked bar featuring local brews, fine wines, cocktails, and more.
6. Bruach Bar and Restaurant
One of the best restaurants in Dundee, the Bruach Bar and Restaurant, is a captivating dining establishment. The restaurant combines flavorful dishes with modern elegance. Their menu celebrates the rich bounty of Scotland’s larder with an array of flavorful dishes. They have something for everyone, including vibrant vegetarian options, tender meat and succulent seafood. Bruach Bar and Restaurant boasts a welcoming ambiance ideal for casual lunches and intimate dinners. To pair with food, they have a well-curated wine list, craft beers, and creative cocktails as well.
7. Gulistan House Event Venue
Last but not least is the Gulistan House Event Venue. This versatile and elegant space is perhaps one of the best places to eat in Dundee. This facility stands as a venerable icon in Dundee’s culinary scene. Gulistan (a Hindi word) traces its roots back to 1979 when it was established at the picturesque Broughty Ferry area. The restaurant is housed inside a 19th-century Gothic Revival building. A visit inside will introduce you to contemporary art and antiques from the Indian subcontinent, along with a blend of culture and history. The commitment to exceptional Indian cuisine sets Gulistan House apart. Food lovers can try a wide array of traditional curries, from sweet to savory and tangy. Some of their famous in-house specialties include the famous tikka masala, tikka masala bhuna, tikka biryani, and Gulistan special biryani. DO NOT forget the biryani (rice cooked with meat) here.