Summer travel: Poetic setting for fine food

Image: David MosesImage: David Moses
Image: David Moses
Scotland is by no means short of historic attractions or acclaimed destination restaurants, but it’s exceptionally rare to encounter both in the same place. However, The Globe Inn in Dumfries is one of these rare beasts – once the favourite “howff” of Scotland’s National Bard, it is now home to a Michelin-recommended restaurant.

Robert Burns moved to Dumfries during his time as an exciseman towards the end of his tragically short life. A regular at The Globe – where he occasionally stayed overnight – the inn is home to The Burns Rooms which contain a number of authentic artefacts from Ayrshire’s Ploughman Poet, including his chair (in which you are invited to sit, although if you don’t then recite some of his poetry the drinks will be very much on you).

You can also see verses Burns etched onto the windowpanes of his bed chamber using a diamond stylus.

It was these historic literary treasures that inspired The Globe’s modern-day proprietors, Professor David Thomson and Teresa Church, to acquire The Globe in 2018. Previously they had bought and restored the derelict Annandale Distillery nearby, returning it to full production in 2014.

Tellingly, David and Theresa describe themselves as “custodians of The Globe” rather than its owners, as they were inspired to buy the inn in order to preserve its invaluable historic legacy.

Embracing its heritage, The Globe Inn’s Michelin-recommended restaurant, 1610, welcomes guests into an atmospheric dining room adorned with a Tam o’Shanter mural, a selection of more than 300 whiskies, and a menu that highlights the very best of locally-sourced Scottish produce.

Under the aegis of head chef Jonathan Brett, 1610 has achieved VisitScotland’s coveted “Taste Our Best” accreditation, in recognition of its sourcing policies and the high quality of the food and drink on offer.

The Globe’s unique cuisine emerges from the fusion of Brett’s Anglo-European culinary groundings and and award-winning sous chef Fraser Cameron’s traditional Scottish roots. Together with commis chef Gary Spratt, their combined one and two-star Michelin experience is rich and distinctive.

The restaurant also offers private dining options – larger parties can book the Grand Dining Room upstairs, while smaller parties can enjoy the privacy and historic authenticity of Burns’ Dining Room or Mrs Hyslop’s Kitchen, where the Globe’s original cook served up meals for weary travellers, dignitaries, royalty, thespians, politicians and locals alike.

Burns’ scholars will also note that Hyslop’s niece, Anna Park, had an affair with Burns – which is why he occasionally stayed at The Globe – and bore him a daughter, Elizabeth. A romantic history, indeed.