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Plum Good on the Island Croft

Autumn on the magical Isle of Mull is fast setting in, as if someone has flipped a switch. A spiciness underlies the cooler air and leaves are on the turn. The meadowsweet has been replaced with rust-coloured grasses and the many thorned blackberry branches are brimming with brambles.

New on the Menu…Sound of Iona Langoustine in Korean Mandu Dumplings with Gochang Langoustine Broth is giving the lobster starter a run for its money. Plums. Plums everywhere. From a huge crop of Victoria plums emerges a novel dessert on the menu. Fresh Plum jam-filled Doughnuts with Plum Fool cream, Star Anise & Plum Compote, Spiced Granola and a warm Lapsang and Plum juice Tea. Jonny fisherman enjoyed this dessert as his special 70th birthday treat this week.

The plethora of peas are finishing, as is the corn, but the runner beans, carrots, beets and broccoli abound. Finally, after years of waiting our fig trees are cropping so we have the pleasure of serving them with our all-Scottish cheeseboard…very impressive for Fionnphort if I do say so myself! Jonny put in many hours during the scorching weather last week in August to dig up and store the 3 varieties of potatoes we have grown. The tatties are very happy nestling in fish boxes in their little covering of dirt in the potting shed…..much like Jonny in his favourite chair, reading Lawrence Hill’s gardening bible and listening to Disraeli Gears by Cream. All this stupendous produce has been greatly appreciated by our diners, as this season sees us fully booked with just a few dates left in October.

Out our boat the Sonsie… Frolicking pods of dolphins have been keeping the husband frequent company on his fishing creel rounds. Inevitably we are starting to see the tail end of the mackerel season. It has been a summer full of the loveliest fish ever. Paired up with our warm dill, sour cream and potato salad and baby garden beetroot- it has been very popular with our guests.

Chuffed and humbled to note that my book sales have been on the upswing as my Masterchef Professionals appearance has regenerated an interest in the new edition.

On a festive note, we are looking very forward to our end of season staff party in October when Mr. Wimpenny, Catriona, Harrie and Jonny and I will be whisked away for a grand dinner. Wigs and costumes are sure to be on display. What to wear?...the pink Marie Antoinette wig with galleon ship or the blond beehive with solar powered fruit garland? Answers on a postcard please…

As temperatures cool on the croft and the bumble bees feast upon the last of the gladioli and dahlias, we look forward to the rest of the autumn season, hoping to welcome more happy people through our doors.

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