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On Wednesday 8th November, we had the pleasure of welcoming Gary Maclean, MasterChef: The Professionals Champion 2016 to Tigerlily for an evening of modern Scottish cuisine with a touch of typical Scottish banter!
The evening began with guests receiving a welcome drink as they arrived, a sparkling glass of Cloudy Bay Pelorus Brut NV to sip on whilst deciding where to take their seats for the evening ahead.
Once all guests were seated and comfortable, Gary came from the kitchen to introduce himself and the dishes that were about to be served. Talking as though he knew everyone in the room, Gary instantly made everyone feel at ease as he divulged some behind-the-scenes gossip from his time on MasterChef: The Professionals and explained the stories behind the evening’s exquisite menu.
The starter of brown crab and razor clam risotto with spinach, hand dived scallop and sea herbs came out and filled the restaurant with the fresh aroma of the sea. A perfectly balanced dish with subtle flavours complimenting the delicate seafood and paired with a citrusy Cloudy Bay Chardonnay from New Zealand, the flavours all worked harmoniously and went down a treat with the guests! We can fully agree with Marcus Waering as he described the dish as “the best razor clam dish I have ever eaten!”
Next up, we had Glazert goats cheese, salt baked and pickled beetroot chutney, toasted hazelnuts and oatcake. One of the iconic dishes from Gary’s time on the show, it was as spectacular to look at as it tasted. Served with a vertical oatcake ring around the crusted goats cheese, there were gasps from all guests as it was placed in front of them. Accompanied by a crisp Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc which cut through the rich and creamy goats cheese – this dish was one to be remembered!
Smoked and roasted loin of venison with celeriac, roasted whisky washed carrots, kale, plums, and an Arran mustard sauce made up the indulgent main course. The subtle smokiness of the tender venison was simply delightful alongside the seasonal vegetables and full bodied Cloudy Bay Pinot Noir. An earthy and heart-warming main course which complimented the fresh and light preceding courses, guests were almost too full for pudding!
Having kept a little space for something sweet, the final dish of the evening consisted of chocolate and cherries with a mascarpone mousse, morello jelly and praline cherry coulis. This dish really was the “cherry on top” and left everyone with a smile from ear to ear on their face! Finished off with a Peachy Day cocktail made up of Belvedere vodka, Byrrh, Crème de Pêche, lemon juice, grapefruit juice, soda water, fresh mint and fresh grapefruit, it was the perfect ending to an unforgettable evening.
In between courses and throughout the evening, Gary made his way around all of the guests to speak to everyone and get photos when asked. With such a humble and friendly host, the evening was enjoyed by all – from ultimate foodies to culinary novices!