LEAF PEEPING IN PERTHSHIRE
For a long time we’ve talked about a day trip to Perthshire in autumn. The area is one of the best at this time of year for leaf peeping and we’ve always wanted to spoil ourselves with lunch at Gleneagles. So, on a Sunday in October, we decided to do it.
Plenty of people had recommended that we stop off at Dunkeld on the way. A very picturesque village in the heart of Perthshire, the surrounding forest, covered in colours of brown, red and orange, can be seen whilst walking along the nearby river or through streets leading to boutique delicatessens, gift shops and cafés.
A little tired from the drive, we popped into the ARAN Bakery for a hot chocolate, with marshmallows of course, and a coffee. It was hard to resist the counter full of cakes and treats but knowing that we had lunch in just a couple of hours we refrained.
For a small place there’s so much to see in Dunkeld. We wandered in and out of shops, walked along the river and through the grounds of the Cathedral. And despite it being a Sunday, there was plenty open.
After a couple of hours in the village we jumped back in the car and headed for Gleneagles, a 40 minute drive from Dunkeld. I’ve talked for so long about visiting the hotel and was excited that we were finally going together.
We booked a table at the Birnam Brasserie, although it was difficult choosing which of the several bars, restaurants and cafés to select. Still quite pricey, here lunch or dinner can be enjoyed in an almost summer house like setting. Paved floors, plenty of greenery and light coloured soft furnishings make for a sunny day, so we were lucky that when we arrived there were clear blue and crisp skies above.
After enjoying a drink in the Century Bar at the other side of the hotel, we decided what to have for lunch. Gnochi is always a favourite for me and given this dish was served with seasonal vegetables I couldn’t see past it.
I’m not going to lie, Gleneagles is pricey but the experience is memorable. We talked for hours over lunch and drinks, followed by tea and cake, with the great service and setting making it a lovely Sunday treat.