It was a lovely evening and we were delighted and proud to come away with ‘Real and Local Food, Gold Medal’ and ‘Small Hotel, Food and Drink Award’.
The 2018 event will be held in May and we are hugely proud and honoured to announce that Lloyd has been selected as a finalist in two categories, ‘Country Chef of the Year’ and ‘Flavours of Scotland’ There is an immense amount of talented chefs in Scotland and it is a great privilege for Lloyd to be announced as one of the finalists.
We had a visit from Gary McLean-Quin, chairman of The Scottish Food Awards, a few weeks ago and this is his review.
REVIEW ⭐ Franklins Restaurant at Cluny Bank Hotel, Forres, Moray | 2018 rating : Highly Recommended Restaurant with Rooms | Chef-patron Lloyd Kenny
Cluny Bank is an imposing Victorian villa found towards the end of an avenue of truly magnificent period buildings in this smart Moray town – frequent winner of Scotland In Bloom awards. Parking is easy.
Over recent years, host Julia has been redecorating most of the rooms and the welcoming and sturdy old stone house is popular for its homely charms, thoughtful touches and warm welcome. They will remember your name. Many guests are frequently back for more R & R and, of course, the food is a key driver of repeat business and overall reputation.
Every room is different, several have particular features – so do have a chat before choosing.
Lloyd Kenny operates his kitchen with undivided dedication and focus. He does things the traditional way, often eschewing “modern gadgetry”. He’s delightfully stubborn. Scots might suggest thrawn but, there you go, it’s the USP here: things are done thoughtfully.
The sourcing is done with obvious pride and passion; menus explain origin. Lloyd heads out daily and chooses much of his stuff. Trusted local suppliers like local Butchers of the Year 2017 Macbeth’s are justly selected.
The dining room is high-ceilinged and smart in dark matt green with stripped-back woodwork and twinkling candles. Seating is most comfortable; there’s plenty room between the white cloth-covered tables. Our only gripe might be the dated wall art. But overall, with its big windows and kindly service, it’s a highly relaxing place in which to unwind and appreciate good food without pretention or rush.
Pre-dinner drinks are enjoyed in the cosy little bar area – which offers a huge range of local Benromach whiskies and Scottish gins. The menu is large format, handsome and comprehensive. Six or seven options at each course.
Dessert is “narrated by Lloyd” at the table and this is a charming highlight. He’ll run though all the current temptations and can modify them to suit. A lovely way to meet the chef.
The hallmark of the genuinely delicious dining offered here is – flavour. From the amuse-bouche tasse of soup, through succulent cuts of meat and traditional puds, the embrace of real food taste is warming and comforting.
Chef has an abundance of natural talent supported by a hard work ethos, and it shines through: not in overly fashionable, delicate plating – but in generosity of flavour and quality of ingredients that have met his critical approval.
You simply know, you can instinctively sense that it’s all good stuff, done properly.
We’ve known Lloyd and the team for years and they have certainly earned our trust, hence they hold, again for 2018, our Highly Recommended gold ribbon rating.
Photography: George Theodosiou for #SCOFA