Coffee Bothy, Deanston Distillery Visitor Centre, Doune

For Christmas I bought OH 12 different miniature whiskies, which I presented to him in a toolbox instead of a girly hamper (just in case you want to steal the idea). The majority of them he had not had before although I did put in a few favourites. From the dozen wee bottles he decided he liked the 12 year old Deanston best. Since it’s not a whisky you find easily in supermarkets we decided we would take a trip to Doune so OH could buy an adult size bottle for himself.

We parked next to the River Teith and walked along to the visitor centre, shop and Coffee Bothy. The woman who served us was really helpful and explained the difference between the Virgin Oak and the 12 year old. OH got to taste a couple of drams so he could see the difference. He plumped for a bottle of Deanston Virgin Oak, which is finished in a barrel that has never been used before compared to the 12 year old, which is aged in ex-bourbon barrels.

Happy with his purchase we decided to go for something to eat in the Coffee Bothy just next to the shop. The tables and chairs were made from large chunks of reclaimed wood, which could have been floorboards or beams. The walls were adorned with whisky facts and pieces of history. There was also a blackboard with the days specials. 2 soups – chicken and rice or potato and leek soup. There was also 2 wraps – one was cajun chicken and the other black pudding and cranberry.

As we took our seats we were given menus, which listed other sandwiches, burgers, mac n cheese and loads of sweet stuff. We decided on sandwiches and added a mug of potato and leek soup. I had bacon, brie and cranberry on toasted brown bread. OH had spicy chicken and avocado on toasted white.

The soup arrived with croutons and even although it was in a mug it was more than enough. Large lumps of potato and plenty leeks made it a filling accompaniment. My sandwiches were thick and tasty. However, the last one only had bacon on it so it could have been slightly better evened out. I realise now I must have swapped the wrong with OH because when he tasted mine he said he could feel it furring up his arteries. His was more messy to eat as the avocado oozed out and I had to lick all around the sides like I was eating an ice-cream slider. We were both happy with our choices though and didn’t want to swap another.

The sandwiches came with crisps and dressed salad and was a very satisfying plate of food with a good mix of tastes and textures.

I could hear others nearby ordering apple pie and there was a cabinet full of beautiful looking sweet delights but our soup and sandwiches completely satiated us so even OH had no room for dessert.

Drinks were a soda water and lime and OH had a cortado (espresso with hot milk) so the entire meal came to £23.94.

Incidentally, they also do tours – check out the website for more details