There are many things I like about The Restoration Yard in Dalkeith Country Park, but for now, let’s praise the fact they have avocado on their breakfast menu.
With the risk of sounding like a hipster/citydwelling t**t, since moving back to my home village, I have missed somewhere to head for breakfast that indulges my love of smashed avocado. I’m sorry, I can’t help it. This is why I am singing the praises of The Restoration Yard.
My local village doesn’t really do breakfast or brunch, and nearby cafes are few and far between. There’s a van that does bacon rolls at the road end, but come on!!
So, The Restoration Yard it is, not often, but whenever I can’t be bothered smashing my own avocado, and feel the need for an Instagram-friendly breakfast. (our eggs last weekend were not right though – poached eggs really need to be runny!)
But, The Restoration Yard is so much more than that. The restoration of the Restoration Yard began in 2015, and millions of pounds and just a year and a bit later, it opened as a three-part destination, with a gorgeous store, a cafe, and a Wellbeing Lab.
The store houses the most incredible number of products I have ever seen – it is a shoppers paradise. Everything has been chosen by Creative Director, and woman behind it, Amanda Pratt, who owned the Avocca brand in Ireland.
There are also some lovely Restoration Yard branded items like this lovely double handled love mug (£11.95), gifted to me. Amanda has developed this range with her retail and graphic design colleague, Sorcha Maguire.
I also could not resist buying these cute vintage style plastic spoons (£3.50 each, I think!). But I had to keep a tight rein on my purse strings in here!
You have to see this shop to believe it – and leave yourself a long time to browse. Downstairs there’s a foodhall, and homewares, jewellery, stationery, children’s toys and clothes, clothing…you get the idea. Upstairs in the Furniture Loft, you can plan the interior of your dream home!
But it is more than just going in and buying. It’s a beautiful space. The 18th Century former stables have been renovated into a light and airy space, and the design and layout is just stunning.
“It may seem like an odd thing to say, but in our view, a shop that’s just about selling something doesn’t interest us,” says Amanda. “We have brought a distinctly different offering to the UK that focuses on simple details, exquisitely executed. We love great design and things that make people happy.
“We wanted to create truly unique retail space different to anything customers have seen before. Our first UK store is located within the restored 18th century stableyard of Dalkeith Palace and Country Park near Edinburgh, owned by the Duke of Buccleuch, and we have used its rich history and heritage to inspire a fantastic design.
“Restoration Yard is packed with personality that can’t be found anywhere else in the UK, together with a truly inspirational product range.”
There are many Scottish brands on offer, which is great to see, and the Cafe uses all local produce, as much as they can. I had a simple Caesar salad and a glass of white on my first visit, and both were delicious. I also just loved the table design – vintage items under glass tops, such a simple yet effective idea.
My lovely friend bought me this adorable retro cat leather bag charm from Ark – beautifully handmade in Scotland from leather.It set me off on a mad pursuit of more from this brand – more on that in this post!
The Restoration Yard is a great destination, not only for locals, but for all
I have yet to visit the Wellbeing Lab, but that’s happening soon. Hopefully have time to grab an avocado breakfast after as well – but maybe won’t spend too much time in the store!