Craig Wilson, owner of Eat on the Green in Aberdeenshire, has done a lot to support local businesses.
And when it comes to area chefs, no one is more vocal than he is about their determination to educate their diners about every possible producer.
Udny Green is a magical place in Aberdeenshire, especially on a sunny evening.
The open green space makes it the perfect, tranquil spot to offer some of the best fine dining in the area.
Eat on the Green supper club
Craig, also known locally as The Kilted Chef, has launched a new Supper Club experience, inviting customers to his restaurant to sample a five-course menu and meet local food and drink producers.
Attending his debut a few weeks ago, it was Claire Rennie of Summerhouse Drinks and Dami Odugbemi of Succulento showcasing their wares in the evening.
The event kicked off at 7pm for a 7:15pm start and matching wines are easily added to the experience if desired. While driving, I opted for a mocktail or two to go with what I thought was a fine meal.
Welcomed with open arms as everyone always is at Eat on the Green, Craig introduced the event and the reason for its launch.
Canapes, including the peppercorn one that was a nod to Craig’s days at Cromlix, were served. There was a good panko black pudding bon bon and a pink pepper and honey mayo, micro brie and red onion tartlet.
While the tartlet was nice, the bon bon was incredibly delicious. Bon bons are a safe bet when it comes to canapes, but the exceptional richness of this one made it the best I’ve ever had. If I had a tray of them, I would have stuck them in my mouth all night.
Sun-dried tomato and basil focaccia and a homemade bread roll were served, and soup soon followed.
Craig had mentioned how big soup had played a role for Eat from the Green (its home meal line) during the pandemic.
A trio of starters adorned the plate. Roasted tomato and basil soup, whipped sweet potato, coconut and chilli pâté and turmeric and chai toast.
I sipped the soup and dipped the crispy toast into the creamy pâté. All three worked harmoniously together.
A palate cleanser was served with a sample of Claire’s Misty Lemonade. The drink wasn’t as bitter or sour as I had imagined and the light bubbles danced along the top of my tongue.
The refreshing sorbet was elderflower and provided a little break between courses.
For main courses, we were treated to poached chicken with apricot, spinach, asparagus and Moroccan chickpeas and braised beef in a red wine jus with mushrooms and bacon, dauphinoise potato, buttered baby potatoes and steamed summer vegetables.
The plate included both dishes and
It was a bit complicated, remember what went with what, so I started mixing the different sides together and made one big meal.
The plate was a heavy portion and took a while to work through.
What I loved was that Craig described exactly why he chose each dish for the meal, with the chicken paying homage to his sister. She had asked him to participate in a cooking show and the chicken was the dish he had prepared for her.
The beef, however, was inspired by a local farmer who told Craig “you’re in beef country here” when he opened a restaurant in Udny.
The meats were cooked to perfection and the couscous was indeed a highlight. I also have a weakness for the dauphinoise potato, which was also a hit. I left some of the buttered tattie as it was just a little too much for me. Others emptied their plates.
I, like most of us, found a second wind when it came to the dessert trio.
‘A sweet taste of Eat on the Green’ consisting of a white chocolate and raspberry ganache with a salted caramel pudding.
The desserts were the perfect size, but it was the sticky caramel pudding that stole the show.
When Craig first arrived in the village, he met the late Bill, who at the time delivered the local newspapers. His wife just passed away and Bill gave his recipe to Craig and since then it’s what he’s been using at the restaurant. Every Sunday before his death, Craig gave Bill a slice of dessert in honor of his late wife.
As dessert was served Claire and Dami shared their stories and The Kilted Chef also hosted a Q&A with the two so diners could interact with the guests even more.
The duo also had samples of their soft drinks and sauces to try, along with plenty of people.
To end the meal, we were treated to petit fours which included a tablet, truffles and chocolate covered strawberries. I wrestled past a truffle and a strawberry and sipped my peppermint tea, hoping it would ease the digestion of such a hearty, hearty meal.
For £45 you really get a feast at the Eat on the Green Supper Club. Not only was the food of high quality, but the service was polished and attentive and the team could not have been friendlier or more welcoming.
We finished around 11pm and while it was getting late the evening didn’t feel slow at any point and went very smoothly.
Along with matching wines, you can also enjoy matching cocktails, so if that tickles your fancy, be sure to let the venue know ahead of time.
Address: Eat on the Green, Udny Green, Ellon, Aberdeenshire AB41 7RS
P: 01651 842337
Price: £45 per person. It is also possible to add matching wines or cocktails.
- Food: 4/5
- Performance: 5/5
- Surroundings: 4/5
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[Why a date at Eat on the Green’s Supper Club is a must in the north-east]