The Glenturret is a gem of a distillery – small and perfectly formed, it is located in a beautiful setting alongside the River Turret, at the foot of the hills of Crieff in Perthshire. Crafting single malt whisky entirely by hand since 1763, The Glenturret is the oldest working distillery in Scotland and the maker of some of its finest whiskies. Now, in 2021, French crystal house Lalique has unveiled a restaurant at The Glenturret, making it the first distillery in Scotland to offer fine dining.

The partnership between The Glenturret and the house of Lalique (founded in 1888), is a fitting one, as the ties between Scotland and France stretch back centuries, and are fondly referred to as ‘the Auld Alliance’.

The Glenturret Distillery. Photography by Agi Simoes and Reto Guntli.

Silvio Denz, executive chairman of Lalique Group, says: ‘It was critical that the shared philosophies of both Lalique and The Glenturret were reflected in the new restaurant.’ 

A firm desire to celebrate Scottish heritage and to add value to the community lies at the heart of the venture. From the local craftspeople and suppliers, to the whisky makers and chefs who have put their skills into bringing The Glenturret Lalique restaurant to life, everyone involved is deeply connected to the place, and the atmosphere is warm and familial.

Line-caught Mackerel, Datterino and Nectarine at Lalique restaurant at The Glenturret
Line-caught mackerel, datterino, and nectarine

Head chef Mark Donald brings impeccable culinary credentials. He joins the restaurant from Michelin-starred Number One at The Balmoral in Edinburgh, previously having shown his flair at some of the world’s most acclaimed restaurants, including Noma in Copenhagen, Restaurant Andrew Fairlie at Gleneagles, Hibiscus in London, and Bentley Restaurant in Sydney.

The new restaurant offers a unique gastronomic experience that honours its Scottish location and the excellent produce that is available there. Locally sourced venison, shellfish, and foraged leaves and mushrooms are among the choice ingredients showcased on the contemporary tasting menu, which is expertly executed from a foundation of classic French cuisine.

The Glenturret Lalique Restaurant at The Glenturret distillery in Scotland. Photography by Agi Simoes and Reto Guntli.
The Glenturret Lalique Bar. Photography by Agi Simoes and Reto Guntli.

For those visiting during the day, afternoon tea is served in the Lalique Salon, with sweet delicacies created by award-winning pastry chef Kayleigh Turner. Look out for her superb Maracaibo chocolate and malted barley gâteau, which is made with the same grains used for making The Glenturret whisky, and is of special note.

As you would expect, the food is complemented by an impressive wine list that has already won a Best of Award of Excellence at the Wine Spectator Awards 2021. Curated by executive sommelier Julien Beltzung, the list features wine from five continents, and includes exceptional offerings from the private cellars of Lalique Group founder Silvio Denz. 

For whisky enthusiasts, The Bar at Glenturret is an exciting prospect in itself. Aglow with a glittering array of glass and enticing liquids, it offers an eclectic selection of 250 extraordinary whiskies, including rare and unexpected expressions that may be enjoyed by the dram or in a cocktail.

Maracaibo 65 Chocolate and Malted Barley Gateaux at Lalique restaurant at The Glenturret distillery in Scotland
Maracaibo 65 chocolate and malted barley gâteau

Designed by Green & Mingarelli, the bar and restaurant display a seamless melding of Scottish and French style. A pair of dramatic Lalique ‘Champs Elysées’ chandeliers and bespoke Lalique glass and tableware bestow a sparkling layer of French crystal. And those for whom a Scottish experience would not be complete without tartan will not be disappointed – traditional Glenturret and Murray clan tartans are elegantly used for the luxurious upholstery. 

This union of two great heritage brands is an exciting event that celebrates the culture of two countries, while placing an important destination restaurant in the heart of the Creiff community, and bringing the whisky distillery experience to a whole new level. §