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The Courtyard has long been one of the city’s favourite foodie haunts and I jumped at the chance to reacquaint myself with the menu and check out the recent refurbishments, promising a ‘relaxed dining experience, where the food, not the restaurant, is centre stage.’

As we perused the menu, we were treated to complimentary warm homemade breads with an olive infused butter, which was soon followed by piquantly moreish little haggis bon bons. The menu featured an array of tempting choices, and I decided on the House Smoked and Cured Sea Trout which arrived beautifully presented with avocado, brown bread crackling and a quail egg. My companion’s Beetroot Risotto blended earthiness with a smoky brie and toasted pine nuts.

After a refreshing interlude with a mango sorbet, I opted for the Guinea Fowl Tasting Plate featuring an enticing selection of boneless wing, breast, crispy leg and served with artichoke and baby vegetables. It really did melt in the mouth. I tried a little of the hearty Highland Estate Venison Loin that my companion chose and was really impressed by the perfectly cooked game and the accompaniment of stovies made from venison shoulder.

If there’s a problem with the Courtyard it’s that no matter what you choose from the menu and how happy it makes you, you’ll still end up coveting what’s on other diners’ plates – particularly when you get to dessert.

We were treated to delightful hand crafted sweets to finish – a macaron and a gooey home-made fruit pastel each, which was a surprising, but delicious end to our meal. However, this did not stop me glaring enviously at the table opposite when their White Chocolate Cream Brulee arrived shortly afterwards!

1 Alford Lane, Aberdeen AB10 1YD
T: 01224 589109

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