Kari and Phil Couser bought what was formerly known as The Garfield Hotel in early 2013 and welcomed their first guests to Victoria Square later that year.
Phil said: “Our initial vision was focused on quality accommodation, making the most of the Victorian grandeur of the building and the local Kings Park area.
“We opened initially with 7 rooms and were awarded a 5 Star grading from Visit Scotland. We subsequently expanded to 10 letting rooms.
“At this time we only provided breakfast, but even then we tried to emphasise the focus on Scottish and local provenance.”
After a couple of years, the couple invested in the renovation of the conservatory attached to the building and installed a full commercial kitchen.
Kari explained: “This created the possibility of opening The Orangery. The restaurant is small, with a maximum of 30 covers split between the main dining room and the conservatory.
“We wanted a dining offering to match the quality of our accommodation, so we have focused on offering traditional afternoon teas and a fine dining evening service. The latter includes a 6-course tasting menu that allows guests to sample more of our menu.
“The focus is on using local produce in our dishes, with as much as possible made on premises. Even the oatcakes that accompany our biscuits and cheese are made by our small team!
“Our aim is to showcase the best in Scottish hospitality and produce. We were very pleased recently to have our rating by Visit Scotland upgraded to a 5 Star Gold Restaurant with Rooms.”
Kari and Phil are now looking to expand their dining offer, increasing their opening hours across the week for both residents and non-residents.
Phil said: “When The Orangery Restaurant opened, we did have a lunch service, which we are hoping to resurrect in 2022.
“We are keen on establishing more local collaborations and recently worked with the Stirling Gantry to lay on a wine tasting and food pairing event, something which we hope to do more of next year.”
Phil added: “The focus on sustainability of food sources is increasing and we’re keen to explore direct sourcing from local producers.
“Our chef is keen on growing much of the finer produce that decorates the beautiful plates of food produced in the kitchen.
“He is also keen on foraging and we are exploring collaborations with local foragers to offer combined dining and foraging experiences.
“We welcome many overseas visitors, and it tells a great story if the plate in front of them consists largely of locally sourced, home grown and foraged produce.”
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