There are few locations in Scarborough more majestic then the Esplanade and the sweep of cream-coloured stone buildings which include the Crown Spa Hotel and the Highlander.
The setting alone – with views across South Bay towards the castle one way and Cayton Bay the other – is worth stopping for.
The three of us took advantage of the Highlander’s outside seating which faces the sea to have a drink while we looked at the menu.
There are themed nights as well as a full menu of starters, mains, desserts with a children’s menu offering fish fingers, chicken nuggets and sausages served with chips and peas.
Starters range from homemade soup and a warm roll and butter (£3.75) to tempura batter king prawns with a sweet chilli dip and a salad garnish (£4.25) or a giant Yorkshire pudding filled with onion gravy (£3.95).
Breaded mushrooms with a garlic dip and salad garnish (£3.75) was my friend Jo’s choice. A generous plateful arrived and was declared delicious.
Her twin sister Lynn and myself opted for chicken breast strips in crispy batter accompanied by garlic dip and salad garnish (£3.95).
Three juicy pieces of chicken were served with a more than enough creamy dip.
There are plenty of main courses to choose from. They include lasagne £6.95), lambs liver and onion gravy (£6.95), herby Lincolnshire sausage (£6.96) and lamb shank (£10.45). All are served with creamed potato and vegetables of the day.
An 80z rump steak with chunky chips, peas, tomato and onion rings (£8.95) was Lynn’s choice and Jo went for the home-made steak pie with chunky chips and peas (£7.95).
Both were standard, tasty pub grub dishes as was mine a plate of local haddock served with chips and peas (£6.95).
The portions are average but, after the starters, quite sufficient and all were tasty.
Various burgers, a choice of curries served with rice and naan breads and vegetarian dishes, complete the main course choice.
There is also a list of side dishes included curly fries, garlic bread and onions rings.
Desserts are listed on a board and there are plenty to tickle those tastebuds.
Treacle pudding with lashings of custard was Jo’s choice and Lynn had warm choclate cake with cream. They were lip-smackingly delicious.
We headed inside to eat our meals and the Highlander has plenty of character.
In keeping with its name associated with Scotland, hundreds of bottles of whisky line a shelf just below the ceiling.
They are certainly a talking point and make the place unique.
The Highlander obviously has its regulars as well as visitors looking for a comfortable watering hole which serves decent food. There is a warning on the menu that as the food is cooked to order there may be a wait at busy times. This said, there was a table of nine and one of four who had given their orders before us and we waited fifteen minutes maximum.
With drinks, the bill came to just over £50 which for three of us was good value – especially when there were a great view, good food and unique character.
Ratings out of ten: Food 7; menu choice 7; service 7; decor 7; ambience 8; overall 7.