Kishorn Seafood Bar
Our last day on the NC500 was one of the most spectacular as we drove from Torridon over the wonderful Bealach na Bá hill road to Kishorn. The road isn’t ideal for nervous drivers (or passengers) and if you have a caravan attached, you won’t be allowed to make the journey. Think beautiful scenery, steep hills, sheer drops and hairpin bends and then add the fact that it’s a very narrow single track road and you will get the idea. This was our second ‘transit’ of the Bealach and since we knew what to expect, we enjoyed it so much more this time than on our hair-raising first attempt seven years ago.
We also had an incentive as we were booked in for lunch at one of the UK’s best seafood restaurants at the bottom of the hill pass. Kishorn Seafood Bar looks over the sea to Skye and is probably one of the most understated and relaxed seafood emporiums you will come across. Twenty years ago Viv Rollo decided on a change of career from the fish farming industry to setting up the seafood bar. Viv’s daughter, Lisa, has taken over the family business this year ensuring the success story continues for years to come.
When we arrived for lunch, the restaurant was buzzing, and both Viv and Lisa were in residence in the open plan kitchen. Refrigerated trays of fresh shellfish are on display to tempt you, but if you need guidance, the staff are more than happy to talk you through what’s on offer. They also have a useful leaflet in several languages to tell you all about the shellfish.
As a West Coast boy, I am ashamed to say that I had never tasted Squat Lobsters before, even though they are a delicacy only found in the West Highlands. There were lots of other delicious dishes on the menu including lobster, crab and seafood platters but it had to be the simple Squat Lobsters for me.
They arrived with crusty bread and Viv was on hand to demonstrate the easiest way to open the little crustacean’s tails. The effort of shelling each wee sweet and juicy squat lobster was well worth it! Folk often avoid shellfish as they’re not sure how to eat it but Viv and Lisa have created an incredibly relaxed chilled out restaurant where they are happy to help you appreciate Scotland’s excellent seafood.
Only the day before we watched crabs being landed at Gairloch Harbour so Raymond decided to choose the dressed local crab. The crab came with salad, bread, and homemade coleslaw; hopefully, we wouldn’t recognise the crab from Gairloch!
The mix of white and brown crab meat was light and delicate – so fresh and flavorsome and although Raymond’s not a lover of coleslaw he very much enjoyed Viv and Lisa’s homemade version.
The restaurant seats about 20 people and there was a mixture of locals and tourists enjoying lunch the day we visited. They must have thought they had arrived in Foodie Heaven in this remote corner of Scotland. I too was in my photographic element as the Lobster and Seafood platters they ordered provided lots of opportunities for photographs to share with you! Watching Lisa and Viv prepare and cook your meal certainly gets your taste buds salivating as the sense of anticipation builds.
Viv and Lisa have a tank where they keep their shellfish alive until required, so you are guaranteed the freshest seafood around. They have nurtured great relationships with local fishermen over the years, ensuring they get the pick of the catch for their customers to enjoy. If you are on the North Coast 500 or visiting this corner of Scotland, then Kishorn Seafood Bar is a must-visit stop on your trip. They open from Easter through to November and also open in the evenings in high season. They have an excellent website, Facebook page, and Instagram account so be sure to check them out before your visit.
Kishorn Seafood Bar
Tel: 01520 733 240
Many thanks to Viv and Lisa for inviting us to come along and enjoy their fantastic restaurant and wonderful seafood.