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Food and Drink

The 10 Press and Journal food and drink stories that you read the most in 2023

From the opening of The Atrium on Aberdeen's Chapel Street to a listicle on the top chippers in Inverness, here are the stories that received the most love. reports.
Karla Sinclair
From left, Darren, Brian and Ryan Clark of The Atrium in Aberdeen. Image: Kami Thomson/DC Thomson
From left, Darren, Brian and Ryan Clark of The Atrium in Aberdeen. Image: Kami Thomson/DC Thomson

The Press and Journal shared a host of food and drink stories in 2023 to keep all you foodies out there – based in the north-east, Moray, and Highlands and Islands of Scotland – satisfied.

However, some caught your attention more than others…

From the opening of The Atrium on Aberdeen’s Chapel Street to a listicle on the top places to visit for a chipper in Inverness, here’s what Press and Journal food and drink stories you read the most this year.

Who won the stout bout between Guinness Nitrosurge and Brewdog Black Heart?

Kicking things off is a column from our resident beer columnist Kieran Beattie, who has been a journalist with the Press and Journal since 2014 and currently leads its digital features team.

More than 22,000 of you tuned in to read this installment.

Demonstrating how the Guinness Nitrosurge system works. Image: Elin Beattie

After BrewDog launched its Black Heart beer to rival Guinness, he decided to try it out to conclude if the young Ellon contender matched up to the Irish heavyweight and its new Guinness Nitrosurge system.

Check out the article for yourself to read his thoughts…

You fell hook, line and sinker for our top fish and chips recommendations in Inverness

Our most-read listicle of the year was based on the top restaurants and chippers serving fish and chips in the Highland capital.

It was written to coincide with National Fish & Chip Day on June 2, but you have continued to show it some love ever since.

Peterhead haddock from The Redshank. Image: Jason Hedges/DC Thomson

Let us know if you’ve stopped by any of the businesses that feature in the list in the comments section.

And if your go-to hasn’t been included, you can make me aware of that too.

Where did I find the cheapest whippy ice cream in the north-east?

In September, I went on a mission to find the cheapest whippy ice cream in the north-east – visiting parlours in Cullen and Stonehaven, and everywhere in between.

I couldn’t believe the response to it. But then again, we all love ice cream.

A whippy ice cream by Whitehills Caravan Park. Image: Karla Sinclair

I did find an overall winner, but I won’t spoil it for you.

Posing as a ‘Karen’ at the Palm Court Hotel’s Karen’s Diner pop-up

Another popular first-person piece was all about me transforming into a Karen for a Karen’s Diner On Tour event in Aberdeen.

The experience was unique, to say the least.

Karla dressed up as a Karen waitress.
I was given a lovely Karen’s Diner apron to wear… Image: Chris Sumner/DC Thomson

Having never worked in the hospitality industry before – and hating fewer things more than rudeness – I had to ignore and call customers names. Oh, and food was thrown too.

It wasn’t pleasant, but Karen’s Diner continues to be popular concept for you foodies.

Another Inverness listicle, this time revealing our go-to spots for the best cooked breakfast

Fish and chips already covered, it’s clear that folks from Inverness – and those passing by – definitely consider breakfast the most important meal of the day.

A full English breakfast. Image: Shutterstock

More than 9,000 people have read our top spots for a cooked breakfast in the city since the article was published back in January.

What are your thoughts on the list?

Trying out the first-ever Aberdeen German Doner Kebab branch

German Doner Kebab flung open the doors of its first branch in Aberdeen last month. Locals went wild after hearing the news, to say the least.

Reporters Andy Morton and Karla Sinclair standing outside the German Doner Kebab on Union Street holding takeaway bags
Aberdeen’s first-ever German Doner Kebab branch opened in November. Image: Kath Flannery/DC Thomson

So, I took my fellow resident taste tester Andy Morton along with me to pay it a visit and see what all the hype was about.

We tried four items in total.

The Atrium opening in former Howies restaurant

Next up, another story that went down well was all about the reopening of former beloved restaurant Howies, located on Aberdeen’s Chapel Street.

However, it was taken over by Ryan Clark and his family who gave it an impressive makeover and renamed the venue to The Atrium.

Darren, left, Brian and Ryan Clark are behind The Atrium. Image: Kami Thomson/DC Thomson

It started welcoming customers back in February, and fast-became a go-to restaurant for many in the city.

I can confirm that the food is fantastic.

Meet the Stonehaven chipper owner dishing out free kid’s suppers

When I received an email from Stonehaven chipper owner Jamie Russo, who revealed he was dishing out free kid’s suppers every Saturday over the summer holidays, I was in awe.

Jamie Russo. Image: Darrell Benns/DC Thomson

Aiming to “relieve some of the stress for parents” during the holidays, I’m sure the inspiring 22-year-old and his team did just that.

Bravo to Jamie and The Redcloak Fish Bar.

Eating out in Elgin on a budget? We’ve got you covered

Another successful Press and Journal food and drink story was all about the best places to eat out in Elgin on a budget.

That’s right, this one is (again) a listicle.

The Ashvale offers hefty yet reasonably priced dishes. Image: Kath Flannery/DC Thomson

There may only be five that earned a mention in the list, but the offering at each venue varies so there should be something to suit all tastes.

Taking on Elgin’s Humble Burger challenge: 30oz of burger patties, 1kg of chips and more

My stomach went through a lot – I repeat, A LOT – for this feature. But thankfully, more than 5,000 of you took the time to give it a read (and seemed to enjoy it).

The story was based on my experience of taking on the Humble Burger’s triple bypass burger challenge in Elgin.

Yes, I did indeed try my very best to tackle this mammoth eating challenge.

I tried the colossal burger challenge back in September. Image: Jason Hedges/DC Thomson

I was one of nine people to attempt it, and I’d recommend checking out the article (if you haven’t already) to find out how we got on.

Even looking at the pictures of that burger make me feel uneasy to this day…

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