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Treat yourself to beautifully fresh food and relaxing vibes at Orrin in Elgin

This was our first time visiting Orrin and it was the perfect Friday night treat.

Orrin was the perfect spot for a Friday night meal. Images: Jason Hedges/DC Thomson
Orrin was the perfect spot for a Friday night meal. Images: Jason Hedges/DC Thomson

Is there a better way to spend a Friday than heading out for a beautiful meal with your best friend?

Especially when you’re going somewhere like Orrin for the first time.

After growing up in Elgin, I’ve been so intrigued by all the new food and drink options that have popped up there over the last few years.

Orrin, where the old Beaver Travel agents used to be opposite the Yeadon’s bookshop on South Street, has always stood out as somewhere I wanted to try.

Anyone I know who’s been has highly praised the food — but I’ve always felt like I needed a special occasion to go.

Inside Orrin Restaurant and Bar in Elgin.
The restaurant and bar is stunning.

Recently, I was working in Moray one Friday and thought it would be a good chance to meet up with my best friend Nicole for a long-due catch-up.

And because it’s been so long since we’ve had a girl’s night together, we decided it was the perfect excuse to head to Orrin for a treat.

Orrin Restaurant and Bar, Elgin

It was such a hot day in Elgin, the sky was still bright blue when we walked into the fine dining restaurant for our 6pm reservation where a smiling member of staff greeted us.

We were swiftly shown to our seats, a small table near the large windows looking out onto South Street, which was a great spot for people-watching as everyone soaked up every last minute of sunshine.

I was surprised to find we were the only table, or at least from what I could see from our table. We chalked it up to still being quite early and such a nice day.

Seating inside the restaurant.
The trendy lampshades, large mirror, and dark tables and chairs made the room feel sophisticated.

I absolutely loved the décor, the dark green leather booth my friend was sitting on was complemented by the light sage-coloured wall above. Paired with the floor-to-ceiling window, it made the room feel open and fresh.

The bunches of white roses on every table felt like such a thoughtful touch too.

Booths at Orrin Restaurant and Bar in Elgin.
Around the corner, the restaurant seemed to be a bit more dimly lit. The booths were covered in a dark peony pattern, and it looked more private — perfect for a few drinks or perhaps a date.

I had to drive back to Aberdeen later that night, so we both ordered a mocktail. Nicole went for the sour mocktail, made with brambles and cranberry juice, and I had the saurin (£6 each). My drink was made of orange, lemon, and Wild Eve’s non-alcoholic botanical infusion.

They were both so refreshing on such a hot day.

As we were sipping our mocktails and chatting away contently a basket of warm freshly baked bread made it to our table and we were offered a slice that we quickly slathered with salted butter. It was so nice we asked for a second helping, which was no problem for our server.

Fresh, vibrant tortellini and juicy terrine starters

To start, my friend ordered the game terrine (£12), served with a blackberry gel, pickled vegetables, and crisp bread. Nicole said the terrine was juicy and fulfilling, while the blackberry gel fit well with the dish.

The game terrine
The game terrine was “juicy” and there was plenty of it.

Meanwhile, the springtime tortellini (£11), served with peas, spinach, and asparagus, had caught my eye. Everything about my green-looking starter felt fresh and vibrant, while the orange sauce artfully smeared around the plate added a creamy, rich element and brought everything together nicely.

To top it off, the pasta was cooked perfectly, as were the vegetables which still had a bit of bite to them.

The springtime tortellini at Elgin's Orrin Restaurant.
The springtime tortellini at Elgin’s Orrin Restaurant and Bar was so fresh and tasty.

We were given a slight break between courses, which made the whole experience feel all the more relaxed. By this point, more tables had been joined around us and the merry chatter of other groups filled the restaurant.

Pretty main dishes packed with flavour

But we weren’t waiting too long before our mains were brought over, and we were both taken by how pretty both the dishes looked.

The venison dish
The venison was one of the more expensive dishes on the menu, but it was a beautiful dish.

Nicole had ordered the Newtonmore venison (£36), which was served with caramelised onions, potato fondant and tender stem broccoli. Pink in the middle and drizzled with a rich gravy, she said it was “cooked to perfection”.

Another view of the venison with caramelised onions, potato fondant and tenderstem broccoli.
Just look at that venison.

I have to admit I felt a wee bit of food envy, but as soon as I tried the squash and red pepper dauphinoise (£24), I needn’t have worried. Clearly, the same attention to detail and care went into crafting both dishes.

I love dauphinoise, so I was eager to try this different take on the classic comfort food that always feels a little bit extra.

The squash and red pepper dauphinoise at Elgin restaurant Orrin.
The squash and red pepper dauphinoise at Elgin’s Orrin restaurant was rich and creamy, without being too heavy.

First of all, everything was cooked so well, but the vegetables still held their texture. The dish was served with pickled vegetables which cut through the creamy, garlicky dish.

It came topped with samphire too, and the crisp, salty plant added a whole different texture to my plate.

Perfect blend of bitter and sweet to finish

We both felt a little spoilt for choice when it came to desserts — everything seemed to take our fancy.

For me, as soon as I saw the lime tart (£9) was topped with Italian meringue I was sold. It was also served with a raspberry sorbet.

The lime tart with Italian meringue and raspberry sorbet
My dessert was so simple, yet so very pretty.

As soon as the pretty little pastry arrived, I knew I’d made the right choice. The lime filling was zingy and refreshing, while the Italian meringue was light and sweet.

Another view of the dessert at Orrin restaurant in Elgin.
The Italian meringue was just perfect.

And the raspberry sorbet brought some balance to the dessert, without being heavy like ice cream would have been.

Across the table, Nicole had ordered the rhubarb and custard (£12), which was made up of poached rhubarb, Wild Eve crème patisserie, thyme panna cotta and honeycomb.

The rhubarb & custard dessert.
This dish was packed with different flavours and textures, but wasn’t overwhelming.

She told me it was the “perfect blend between bitter and sweet”.

The verdict

We both enjoyed spending our Friday night in Orrin, and it was one of the most relaxed, yet trendy, places to catch up.

The service was fantastic, with our smiling servers checking in but never being overbearing. I also appreciated that we weren’t rushed through our meal and we could enjoy everything at our own pace.

The bar at Orrin in Elgin
The bar at Orrin restaurant in Elgin was gorgeous.

While the menu isn’t huge, I would say there’s something for everyone on it — and, from my experience, a smaller menu often means the dishes are given more care and attention. This was certainly the case in Orrin, as all the food was beautifully presented and tasted incredible.

It may be a bit on the pricier side, but it is the perfect place if you fancy a treat.

My advice would be not to wait for a special occasion to come around to try it if you haven’t already been.


Address: 2-6 South Street, Elgin

T: 01343 357564


Price: £128 for four mocktails, two starters, two mains and two desserts.

Disabled access: Yes

Dog-friendly: No


  • Food: 4/5
  • Service: 4.5/5
  • Surroundings: 4/5