Aberdeen Restaurant Week | Where we ate

Aberdeen plays host to a surprising number of festivals throughout the year. My personal favourite has always been the light festival, but there's a new one arrived to steal Spectra's crown - say hello to Aberdeen Restaurant Week! Running from 1st - 8th February, the inaugural ARW went down a storm with local foodies and who can blame us? At just £10 for a two course lunch or £20.18 for a three course dinner, it was the perfect excuse to try out some different eateries for the first time.
So, where did we eat?

Moonfish Café

Moonfish has been on my radar for a while now (ever since head chef Brian McLeish was a Masterchef professionals finalist in 2014!) but I've never had an excuse to splash out on dining here. Considering 3 courses would usually cost £36, the Restaurant Week menu was a steal. There was the option to add wine pairings too but I indulged in a Harris G&T instead.

I was slightly worried about the portion sizes for Gordon so we added on the snacks - Beef Tendon, Mackerel, Potato and Pork Cheek Salsa Verde, Manchego £2.50 each - which turned out to be our favourite dishes of the evening! The citrus cured haddock starter was a delight too.

The main course - Skate, Celeriac, Apple, Horseradish - was tasty but I did find the fish bones a bit off putting. That's just me being fussy though! We ordered a side of crispy polenta roast potatoes which I absolutely adored. Dessert was my favourite of the three courses - a unique take on pecan pie with sweet potato and foie gras shavings!

I'd definitely go back to Moonfish but I'd save it for a special occasion and probably choose meat dishes rather than fish. All in all, good value for money and a great night out!

Café Andaluz

I would have liked to check out some of the lunch menus throughout the week but as I don't live or work in the city it just wasn't possible. We managed to squeeze in another dinner though, and combined our visit with the opening night of Spectra. There were over 30 restaurants involved in Aberdeen Restaurant Week so it was tough to pick, but something about Café Andaluz' tapas menu hooked me in. Maybe it's the fact we're planning a roadtrip round Andalucia soon?!

A set starter of Spanish olives and a basket full of the softest bread, dipped in olive oil with balsamic vinegar, was followed by a main course of three tapas dishes each. It didn't sound like much but a mountain of food arrived swiftly at our table, along with a big glass of sangria! When in Spain...

He chose the honey and mustard chicken fillets, black pudding with an apple and onion chutney and calamari served with a paprika mayonnaise. Pork and beef meatballs in tomato sauce, patatas bravas and paella tapa were my picks. I'd say choose one or the other of the last two as they were both quite carby and filling, and delicious! We shared of course but even between the two of us we couldn't finish everything.

Gordon's praline and salted caramel cheesecake was delicious, but a little too sweet for me. However, my crema catalana was perfect with a lovely, thick caramel glaze to smash through to the dreamy custard. Dessert was a struggle but we battled through!

We got a lot of food for £20.18 at Café Andaluz. You could argue it was better value for money than Moonfish but that would be unfair. The two restaurants have completely different dining styles and that's what I like about the ARW concept - there's something to suit all tastebuds and appetites!

Did you try anywhere new during Aberdeen Restaurant Week? Let me know in the comments below!

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