Dinner at Daisy Tasker, Dundee
Earlier this month, Lewis and I took a trip to Dundee for the weekend. As you’ll no doubt have heard, Dundee’s recently undergone huge regeneration, with the opening of the V&A museum and along with it, a whole new host of businesses and activities coming to the city. We were staying at the Apex City Quay Hotel and Spa*, with views over the water and access to their lovely Yu Spa, but whilst we were enjoying the facilities, we wanted to get the full experience of Scotland’s rising star city too.
Before we went, I did some research on the best places to visit, and when it came to restaurants, one place kept coming up time and time again - Daisy Tasker.
Newly opened earlier this year, Daisy Tasker is a contemporary Scottish restaurant, situated inside the Hotel Indigo in Dundee. Named after a beloved young jute weaver from the city (there’s even photos of her scattered around), the restaurant celebrates Dundee’s industrial heritage. Think white brick walls, exposed pipework and contemporary lighting, with a backlit bar and sleek wooden furniture; the whole vibe is leaning towards a cool New York warehouse kind of vibe, but with a distinctly Scottish feel, which becomes even more apparent when you take a glance at the menu, packed with local ingredients and classic flavours.
Armed with a bottle of pinot grigio (£22), it was time to make our choices. For starters, I opted for the mulligatawny soup (£6.50), which was delicious - zingy and warming, not too spicy but still incredibly flavourful, served with a warm flatbread and charred lime. Lewis chose the Talisker 10 cured salmon (£7.50), which was beautifully plated and tasted subtly of the whisky, whilst still allowing the freshness of the salmon to shine through. That was a really pleasant surprise for our starters; nothing in the flavours was too overwhelming, given that both of our choices had the potential to step on the flavours of the rest of the meal.
The main courses were the highlight of the meal for me. Lewis chose the blade of beef, with haricot beans, chorizo and butternut squash, with a rich beef and red wine sauce (£17.50). The beef fell apart, it was so soft and so juicy! I went for the hake, served with pancetta, braised onions, mashed potato and cavolo nero, again in a rich and flavourful sauce (£18.50). Hake is my favourite fish and this was just gorgeous, a big slab of fish that was so meaty and so, so delicious. We also ordered a side of red rooster hand-cut fries, with a bone marrow sauce for dipping - easily some of the best chips I’ve had in a long time. The portions were chunky and we certainly didn’t need dessert…. but we obviously had it anyway.
After a lot of deliberation, Lewis went for the Dundee sticky pudding (£6), which, we learned from the waitress, was a twist on sticky toffee pudding, with Dundee marmalade woven through the sponge for a zesty spin on the classic. It was a huge lump of sponge, served with plentiful sticky toffee sauce and and velvety clotted cream ice cream. I chose the white chocolate ganache (the sweetest tooth, I couldn’t resist), which was a beautifully-presented bowl filled with rich blobs of ganache, soft meringue and caramel ice cream (£6). The only out-of-place element for me was the blend of tarragon scattered over the dessert - for me, herbs are a tricky one to place with pudding and tarragon is so overwhelming, I felt like I needed to scrape that to the side. But tarragon out of the way, the rest of the plate was just gorgeous.
Overall, the food at Daisy Tasker was great, and we really enjoyed ourselves. We were very full and very happy with our selections, there wasn’t really a mis-step in any of the plates (apart from the tarragon, but that’s just personal preference) and we would absolutely recommend it to anyone heading to Dundee. The prices are reasonable, especially considering the standard of the food and the beautiful presentation.
The service was friendly, if a little slow at times (we were waiting almost half an hour to settle our bill, but as we still had a little wine left, it wasn’t the end of the world). The only disconcerting thing service-wise was that the staff started setting up for breakfast all around us, halfway through our meal, which was a bit strange and made us feel that we should hurry up, but as the restaurant is so new, I’m sure these are just tiny issues which will be ironed out over time. No huge deal and the food more than made up for it.
If you’re heading to Dundee soon, I definitely recommend booking yourself a table at Daisy Tasker - for a special occasion or a cosy date night alike, I think you’ll have a great time.
Our meal at Daisy Tasker was provided on a complimentary basis (except alcohol), in return for this review. All opinions are my own.