Springingtiger's Blog


Salute to The Commodore
March 24, 2016, 23:51
Filed under: food, Scotland, Travel | Tags: , , , , ,

As a general rule I put my reviews of restaurants I have enjoyed straight onto TripAdvisor, but sometimes an experience comes along that provides a welcome exception to my rule. One such exception is The Commodore Inn in Helensburgh where my wife and I have had dinner.

The Commodore is attached to the Travelodge in Helensburgh by a corridor. I tend to assume that any restaurant connected in any way to a Travelodge will be at best adequate, but nothing to write home about. We went to the Commodore merely because it was convenient; I have to say I am delighted we did.

In the first place the service was excellent; both friendly and well informed. Mark, our waiter and the Duty Manager was very helpful and answered a lot of questions to help me formulate a proposal to a society with which I am involved. The service was also efficient and proactive without being intrusive.

The atmosphere in the restaurant is relaxed and reasonably quirky with its beams and benches. The background music remains where it should be, in the background enabling and not inhibiting conversation.

The wine list is reasonably priced and the recommendation for a rose that Mark gave us while not being the most expensive in the group met our needs perfectly.

The food was excellent. The lunch and dinner menus are similar, the lunch menu adding a serlection/ of sandwiches to the mix. Several years ago in Terre a Terre in Brighton I was introduced to Battered Halloumi and chips, the vegetarian answer to a fish supper. The Commodore’s Dinner menu (but not the lunch menu) has Beer – battered Haloumi with chips, mushy peas and gherkin relish and I loved it. If I have any complaint it is that the portion size is so large I was unable to face a pudding and settled on Irish Coffee to finish my meal. The dessert menu had an option of a coffee and mini pud. My wife had the Bramley apple crumble with her coffee and it was perfect with a scoop of vanilla icecream offsetting the tartness of the Bramley apples.

The menus contain some options for vegetarians. They also have a number of items marked with an ‘F’ which means they are available as part of their ‘Fixed Price Menu’ which at Lunch gives you two courses for £10.95 and three for £13.95 at dinner this rises to £12.95 and £15.95 respectively. Unfortunately I have reached an age where my desire far outstrips my capacity for consumption. However I think the meal represents excellent value and the evening was one of the most enjoyable I have spent in a restaurant in a long time. I might too easily have assumed that a corridor from the Travelodge precluded a truly enjoyable dining experience and missed this. Having discovered that the Commodore is part of a chain called Vintage Inns, I shall keep my eyes open for them.

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