Like many who visit the Cairngorms, New Zealander Kirsten Gilmour fell for the place and ended up staying, opening up a café around a decade ago that is among the best in the National Park and beyond thanks to great food and a welcoming, laid-back vibe. Above a shop, and enjoying views across to the snowy hills, with an al fresco terrace, Mountain Café is a slick operation from its great food, offering breakfasts (the full stack is a top-quality offering), lunches, excellent cakes and bakes, and an impressively extensive kids' menu, to the expanding range of home-made preserves, sauces and other deli delights to take away. Gilmour is a passionate chef and strong advocate of the local produce – which is well reflected in the excellent food, from various sandwiches on home-made bread to interesting salads such as Asian noodle and spiced salmon and possibly the Cairngorms' best burger – a messy, meaty treat enhanced by Gilmour's own Granddad's rather special green tomato relish. All are made to feel catered for, from those wanting a hearty breakfast and the more heath-conscious to vegetarians, families and those just in for a good coffee and indulgent cake. There's also a strong community ethos, including local artworks for sale on the walls (along with all manner of Kiwi and climbing paraphenalia) regular charitable donations, plus Gilmour, along with other local chefs, visits schools to help inspire children as part of the Adopt a School project.
- Provides: Children's portions, Children's high chairs
Reviews & features
A taste of New Zealand in Scotland in new cookbook A Kiwi in the Cairngorms22 Feb 2017
Showcasing dishes from Kirsten Gilmour's Cairngorm dining destination The Mountain Café
If you know a bit about Aviemore, you'll know that The Mountain Café is where to find some of the best food in the Cairngorms National Park. Originally from South Island, New Zealand, owner Kirsten Gilmour brings her background as a chef and enthusiasm…