Independent shopper: Tom Tsappis, Killiecrankie House

15 June 2022, 07:21 AM
  • Tom Tsappis, chef patron of Killiecrankie House, discusses his local food influences and love of foraging
Independent shopper: Tom Tsappis, Killiecrankie House

Killiecrankie House is a fine dining restaurant with rooms located in Highland Perthshire, on the edge of the picturesque Cairngorms National Park. The property is set in 4 acres of woodland, with a kitchen garden supplying the restaurant with seasonal produce. The restaurant serves a tasting menu of innovative Scottish cuisine that celebrates the cultural and gastronomic bounty of the country. There are also five beautiful bedrooms for those looking to stay the night, with guests receiving a gourmet breakfast in the morning.

We make full use of the produce that is available locally and are constantly looking for new producers with interesting things we can use in the kitchen and bar. In Perthshire there is a huge directory of makers and producers whom we have visited and forged relationships with since we opened last year. We change our menu to utilise the very best seasonal produce and ingredients. We partner with Perthshire Wild Food for foraging various produce such as herbs and mushrooms found in the surrounding woods.

We’ve even found ways to incorporate foraged ingredients into our drinks offering, for example we have a Bramble cocktail that makes use of the Ribena-like Flowering Currant that’s growing in the garden. The various bread and pastries that guests eat for breakfast are from Wild Hearth Bakery in Crieff. We use Perth-based George Campbell for our Scottish seafood, with Argyll oysters being used in our “Drunken Oyster” dish (itself inspired but the repopulation of oysters in the Dornoch Firth by Glenmorangie Distillery), and wild halibut caught off the Shetland isles for our “Shetland Skink” dish. A neighbouring estate supplies us with trout and game. 

We have also found some brilliant drinks producers nearby. For example, the local brewery Wasted Degrees, based in Blair Atholl. We’ve partnered with them to create our very own beer that can only be found at Killiecrankie House and paired with our “Squid Cooked in its Own Ink” dish. The spent grain from the beer-making process is also used to make buns to go alongside our beer-poached asparagus dish on the menu currently.

All our coffee is from the award-winning Glen Lyon Roastery in Aberfeldy. We also stock some wonderful kombucha from Bad Gal Boocha, who are based in Cupar, which features in our non-alcoholic drinks pairing. A lot of these connections have come through word of mouth, and it is wonderful to be a part of the burgeoning foodie scene in the area. The next step for us in terms of produce that demonstrate a real sense of place is to get our kitchen garden bearing fruit (literally) - you can’t get much more local than that!

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