The Ubiquitous Chip is a large place on two stories within a maze of buildings. You’ll see signs for it along the way, where you pass many bars and small restaurants. Once inside, the stone and brick walls are decorated with plants and cooking/food related items. Brick floors are in one room and then as you go up a couple steps there is a tile floor. Large farm tools are on one wall and the lighting is lowered. Opening in 1971, it feels homey and rustic with a lots of visual interest on the interior. For example a light fixture was composed of bottle stoppers and a light shade was made from crystal decanter with the bottom cut out. The small polished wood tables are not set too closely so the noise level is not bad. The entry room had wicker chairs whereas our side room had wood chairs with a padded seat. The second floor was like an open balcony that framed the periphery of the room. No music was in the background, just the hum of lots of people enjoying their time here. The staff was friendly but not particularly efficient and the food was mixed.
Bread service was served with goat butter. The bread was soft and light with some texture.
An amuse bouche was a mackerel mousse with radish, beet root sauce and toast. The mousse was smokey and smooth and the beet sweet and good. It was a nice combination where the toast piece added a bit of texture.
The Chip’s own, since 1971, venison haggis, champit tatties, and neep cream was a good starter. The neep cream was a turnip sauce that was on the haggis and alongside were mashed potatoes . The venison in the haggis was mixed with steel cut oats and liver. It was very soft to cut and had a slight liver essence and a good spiciness. The potatoes were great and overall it was a good plate with lots of tastes and texture.
Barra scallops, pork belly, pea cream, apple and radish had lots of peas as well as pea cream. Some thin slices of apple helped give moisture to the really meaty piece of pork belly. The scallops were cooked nicely but everything of the plate benefitted from a bit of additional salt. It was overall good not great as somehow it didn’t blend in a complimentary fashion.
Scotch Aberedeen Angus beef is born, bred and eated in Scotland. It was served as a classic fillet steak au poivre or plain, both with caramelized shallots and dauphinoise potatoes. We had steak jus with the au poive cut and peppercorn and whisky sauce on the other. The beef was good not great with only a bit of beef flavor, no real richness to the meat and cooked more medium than rare. The sauces were good. Alongside each piece was a tasty cooked caramelized shallot piece and the lovely dauphinoise potatoes, which were the star of the plate.
Dessert was The Chip’s famous Caledonian ice cream served with summer berries and honey oats. The berries were blueberries and strawberries. The ice cream struck me more like a semi freddo than ice cream but it was nice and the oats gave it all a very fun texture and taste. The fruit had most of the flavor in this dish. It was nice and a good ending for a mixed meal. We ordered the recommended pairing of Auchentoshan 3 Wood single malt scotch to go with it.