Julia and Nick Nairn are opening a new restaurant with a focus on outdoor dining at the Cook School site in Stirlingshire this week, with a new format for the Cook School to be announced later in the year.
As well as being forced to close due to coronavirus restrictions, the venue suffered two floods earlier this year which prevented it from being able to fully reopen.
Nick's at Port of Menteith will offer a daily changing, seasonal menu overseen by Nick himself. Seafood will be sourced from fishmonger Willie Little in nearby Crieff, and other suppliers will include Leckie Farm eggs and Fife's Buffalo Farm mozzarella and ice-cream.
In addition, specialist pizza chef Paul Hughes will serve Roma-style pizzas made using five-day aged dough. Toppings will include Great Glen venison salami, Campbells haggis, Katy Rodger's Crowdie cheese and a North African-inspired chicken shawarma pizza with rose harissa, chermoula, toasted pine nuts, brandy-soaked raisins and pomegranate.
The restaurant will seat 40 in the dining room, with a further 100 covers outside under a stretch tent and a series of pergolas. Local designer Iona Crawford has revamped the interiors including a new shop selling cookware, books, tableware and interior items.
Nick Nairn said: "This has been an incredibly tumultuous year for our family and our business so Nick's at Port of Menteith heralds an exciting moment for the whole team. We've developed things that we, and many others, have taken pleasure from during lockdown – from outdoor eating in beautiful natural surroundings to the simplicity of enjoying really great food and drink in a relaxed setting. I'm really looking forward to sharing this special place and being able to develop dishes from the best ingredients I can source on a daily basis."
Managing director Julia and chef Nick run Nick Nairn Enterprises together. The business also includes Nick's on Henderson Street in Stirlingshire, which opened in early 2020, and the Kailyard by Nick Nairn at the DoubleTree by Hilton hotel in Dunblane.