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About this restaurant
Purpose-built wooden building houses Am Birlinn - The Galley - near Dervaig, on the Isle of Mull off the west coast of Scotland. The port relies heavily on tourism, especially in summer, and the restaurant is open during the busy season from March to October every day, and October to January Thursday to Sunday.
It offers meals and snacks from 12.30pm, the evening menu starts at 5.00pm and last orders are taken at 9.00pm. Not surprisingly, considering its position, An Birlinn is a seafood specialist with man of the fish coming from local waters. Shellfish - oysters, crab, mussels, lobster, langoustine - are all caught locally. Tourist boats often dangle a line over the side and offer the restaurant whatever they catch. Meat comes from local farms and their own croft.Oysters: £1 each; Surf & Turf: £35; half-lobster: £18; full lobster: £25.
A real restaurant on the Isle of Mull with the taste of the terroir - "a silver spoon in your mouth, with your feet in the peat". We care about where our fish comes from and do not sell species from the list of endangered stocks www.mcsuk.org.
Am Birlinn is almost self-sufficient and can tell you where every fish comes from - mainly because the staff have either caught it themselves or obtained it - all line caught - from friends on the island.
All crustaceans are caught by a local creel boat, scallops are hand-dived from a newly formed ethical shellfish company, oysters are farmed less than a mile from the restaurant and the mussels are rope-grown at Inverlussa. The farmed halibut is from Gigha and organic salmon from Shetland or from Hebrides Harvest.The restaurant tells us: "We feel very strongly about the issues facing the fishing industry and care about the people involved in it now and in the future, we can only secure a future for these people through responsable sourcing."
Am Birlinn is made almost unique by its position and the way it sources its seafood but we have no hesitation in awarding them one of our highest scores - 4.5 Blue Fish - making them one of the best for sustainability in the UK.
The owner, Iain Morrison, has said he fully intends to maintain the restaurant’s sustainable sourcing policy.
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