Sunny Day in St. Monans

Sunday, 1 January 2017

We've been having a rather low key Christmas period to recover from a roller-coaster 2016. The day after boxing day got us wanting a little change of scenery and we went on an impromptu drive to the fishing village of St. Monan's in East Neuk. We knew nothing about St. Monan's and yet it was one of the loveliest little places we've visited in a while. And with a great wee restaurant too!

St. Monan's is just an hour's drive from Edinburgh and in the Kingdom of Fife. Fife has a real mix of towns and villages - some stunning and some more grim. We were pleasantly surprised by East Neuk - the light was stunning, the village colourful and so peaceful.

St. Monans has a rich history dating back to the 800's. The book Guide of the East Neuk of Fife by D Hay Fleming is said to have a good section on the history of St. Monans and is on my reading list for a 'quiet' day.

As it was the Christmas holiday period, most places were closed but we managed to book at the Craig Millar restaurant. They did a two course set menu which was unexpectedly exceptionally good. The restuarnt also has excellent sea views - if its wasn't for the cold, you could mistake the views to be from a Mediterranean island. 

For my main course, I opted for the Hake with Chorizo and Butter Beans. It was excellent - the creamy sauce incredibly good and the portion size was perfect. 

Ed opted for the Slow Cooked Feather Blade Beef - stunningly presented, hearty and very delicious too. We were both surprised by how good both dishes were because we had no idea what to expect from the restaurant.

Just when we thought that was the stunners sessions done, desserts arrived. My Chocolate Cremeux with malt ice-cream was again beautiful, interesting and tasty. Ed's Pear Parfait was intricate, complex and delicious too.

The added bonus was that as the restaurant is usually closed on a Tuesday, it was empty and that made our lunchtime feel quite serene too. They just decided to open it to make up for the Christmas closure. We had certainly hit lunchtime jackpot.

For our exploration, I wore a newly acquired Uniqlo Down Coat and non-classic Ugg boots. I'd always turned my nose up at padded jackets and Uggs but these two have made me a convert. Comfortable, nice looking, warm and water resistant - what more can you ask for to cope with Scottish weather!

We walked around the village exploring little streets, the harbours and walking routes before slowly bundling ourselves back in the car for the journey home.

Perhaps it was the combination of no crowds, great weather, great scenery and excellent food that made us fall in love with St.Monans.

I won't lie - we even looked at housing options here. Shame it is not a quick train ride to Edinburgh as that would have made this place very tempting to move - surprising given that Ed and I have always thought we were city folk!

Hope you all had a lovely festive season and happy 2017 - may be wonderful! Ann x

Wearing Uniqlo Ultra Light Down Stretch coat, Claudie Pierlot trousers Gap skinny jeans, Sheriff & Cherry sunglasses and Ugg Briar Boots suede boots. 

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