The wife and I didn’t know what to expect when we pulled up outside Scott’s Bistro last weekend.
It was only a couple of years ago I was there writing a story about a football supporters club which was struggling to stay open.
Now that same building looks new and revitalised and, when you step inside, the spacious bar/lounge area is as far removed from the old club as you could get.
As we were shown to our table it really hit home just how much the Scotts had invested in this establishment.
You couldn’t make a better first impression - and we hadn’t even eaten anything yet.
When wee Charlie clocked the children’s play room, situated at the far end of the dining area, he was off - hitting things with a plastic hammer until his plate of cracking homemade wedges arrived.
Throughout our meal the staff were professional and friendly, taking the time to talk to Charlie and making sure everything was okay with our meal - nothing was too much trouble.
Presentation plays a major part in Scott’s Bistro, which was plain to see when our starters arrived - Jayne had white crab meat, coriander and lime bound in creme fraiche and I had curried parsnip soup.
Those dishes looked pleasing to the eye, but they were even more satisfying on the palate - Jayne enjoying every bite of her crab, while I shovelled down spoonful after spoonful of the rich, creamy soup.
Richness and creaminess were themes which ran through our eating experience as I opted for chicken stroganoff, which featured the creamiest chicken, mushrooms and rice I have ever tasted.
Jayne’s fresh egg pasta was lovingly covered in grain mustard and white wine with delicious smoked sausage and parmesan shavings - it’s obvious Scotts takes almost as much pride in the appearance of their food as they do the taste.
As we were scooping the last spoonfuls of dessert - melt-in-your-mouth meringue and multi-textured cranachan - into our mouths, award-winning head chef Glenn Richards took time away from his busy kitchen to introduce himself and tell us how he and the Scott family are attempting to bring something new to Grangemouth.
And - from the meal we enjoyed, the service, and the ambience created by the amazingly well laid out dining area - they have succeeded.
The fact the venue also has two fantastic function rooms which are perfect for any event you could imagine - from business conferences to big birthday bashes - and the promise of more live musical entertainment from bands of the calibre of Dignan, Dowell and White to come, arguably makes Scott’s Bistro one of the most exciting and ambitious premises to ever open its doors in Grangemouth.
Scott’s Bistro is in Wood Street, Grangemouth, telephone (01324) 412303. Visit www.thescottsbistro.com for full details of menus.