Dakota Bar and Grill
- Telephone 01698 835444
- Opening times Mon–Sat noon–midnight; Sun 12.30pm–midnight.
- Bar open Mon–Sat 10am–1am; Sun 10am–midnight.
- Food served Mon–Sat noon–2.30pm, 6–10pm; Sun noon–2.30pm, 6–9pm. [Bar menu available noon–6pm.]
- Website www.dakotaeurocentral.co.uk
The upmarket chain's Eurocentral hotel has an imposing gloss-black exterior housing a contemporary restaurant and bar serving up classy grill dishes, fine wines and cocktails.
Dakota is a dark, mysterious looking building, more Gotham than Glasgow, that sits beside the M8 near Motherwell. The interiors too are dark and atmospheric with bold use of black and dark chocolate colours. It has an air of affordable quality about it and if they gave Michelin stars for service, Dakota would have a couple. During the week the hotel’s packed with business travellers and at weekends the locals make full use of the above average, hotel bar and grill. Booking ahead is strongly advised. The menu is a little unadventurous, but has a broad price range from mains at £9.50 through to £29.95. To start, fritto misto is generous and well executed. Classic prawn cocktail has a good sauce covering some smallish prawns. Steaks are a feature of the menu, and a very good piece of Aberdeen Angus fillet comes cooked exactly as requested. Among desserts, a cheesecake with peanut and honeycomb is rich, but lacks a strong cream cheese flavour. Overall, for the service and food on offer, Dakota represents good value for money.
A dark, mysterious-looking monolith, more Gotham than Glasgow, sitting beside the M8 near Motherwell. The interiors are just as moody with bold use of black and dark chocolate colours – an atmospheric backdrop for good dining. Having trained under Ondine’s Roy Brett at Malmaison Leeds, head chef Tony Tapia rejoined his mentor, via a stint at Le Caprice, at Rick Stein’s Seafood Restaurant before following him to Dakota, and that tutelage continues to serve him, and his diners, well. During the week the hotel’s packed with business travellers while at weekends the locals make good use of the quality hotel bar and grill. The compact menu, more familiar than fancy, includes starters of generous fritto misto and dressed West Coast crab. Grill options offer various cuts of perfectly tailored Aberdeen Angus beef, while other mains feature plenty of seafood to redress the surf/turf balance, such as fish and chips, roast halibut and monkfish curry. Cocktails are something of a speciality from the bar, an additional frill at a restaurant where service, food and ambience combine to offer surprisingly good value for money.
- Private dining: 10 / 6 / 30
- No. overnight rooms: 92
- Provides: Gluten-free options, Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Wheelchair access
- Music on stereo: Background/French/jazz
- Capacity: 70
- Largest group: 10 in main restaurant
- Open since: 2006
- Number of wines sold by the glass: 8
- House wine: £16.95 per bottle