Highland chef serves up new loch side dining experience on NC500

One of the Highlands’ leading chefs has unveiled a new loch side dining experience at Kylesku Hotel on the world-famous North Coast 500.

Head Chef Grant Mercer and his team have launched a fresh summer menu for diners to enjoy outdoors with uninterrupted panoramic views over Loch Gleann Dubh..

Complete with glass-fronted deck and space for up to 30 people outside, Kylesku new menu celebrates the best of Scottish Highland larder, including fresh fish, hand-dived scallops and lobsters from Ullapool and Oban.

‘We’re really excited to be launching our new loch side dining experiences to guests in time for mid-summer,’ said head chef Grant.

‘Located right on the world-famous NC500, we’re lucky to have one of the north Highland’s most enviable locations for alfresco dining with panoramic views of the beautiful Loch Gleann Dubh.

‘I’m confident that our new menu has something for everyone, and will appeal to foodies, or casual diners. 

Kylesku Hotel deck

Kylesku Hotel deck

‘You can choose to eat at the formal restaurant, bar or new outdoor dining area which allows our guests to enjoy the sunshine and uninterrupted panoramic views over the loch.

‘We are right on the loch side, so we get deliveries of mussels, langoustines, lobsters, and crabs landed straight in front of the restaurant and carried directly into the kitchen. 

‘I just have to cook it and let it simply sing for itself.

‘Our next-door neighbour, Darren Mackay, is a fisherman who keeps us well supplied with langoustines, brown crabs, and spiny lobsters. 

‘The catch is often hours old if not minutes old.

‘You can see the mussel farm, which is owned by John Ross, from the windows of the hotel. 

‘Mussels couldn’t get any fresher, we are talking about food metres, rather than food miles.’



Q&A with head chef Grant Mercer

Head chef Grant Mercer


What’s your career highlight so far?

I’ve been privileged to cook for some big names, like Jamiroquai when I was at Orocco Pier, as well as Sean Connery and Ronnie Corbett at Contini on George Street. To me it’s just like cooking for a normal person but it’s nice to see them leave happy.

 What makes a good chef?


Is there any food you dislike?

Truffles are not my cup of tea, but we have a wonderful mushroom and truffle pate on the menu at Kylesku, which everyone loves.


What’s your favourite wine?

I’m more into ale, so I like Cromarty beers and whiskies from the Island of Arran and Talisker from Skye.

Who do you admire in the industry and why?

Gary Rhodes was quite an inspiration when I was younger and Tom Kerridge’s outlook is much like my own; simple, fresh, honest, good food.



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