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Visit Scotland | Alba
Article published 22/01/2020

The Scottish Thistle Award for Best Bar/ Pub celebrates the key role of bars and pubs in the experience Scotland's visitors. Whether offering bespoke evening cocktails overlooking vibrant cityscapes or a relaxing drink by a warm fire, they provide visitors with a wide variety of options in a wide variety of settings.

This week, we’re celebrating the regional winners in the Best Bar/ Pub category – Rutherfords Micropub in the Scottish Borders, The Pot Still in Glasgow and Criterion Bar in St Andrews.

Rutherfords Micropub in Kelso was crowned Best Bar/ Pub at the Lothian & Borders Regional Final of the Scottish Thistle Awards after first opening its doors in 2015. The real ale and bespoke gin bar, which is also Scotland's first Micropub, promotes real conversation and offers a perfect antidote to modern life. Partners, Debbie and Simon Rutherford were delighted to receive the Scottish Thistle Award for the Lothian & Borders. 

– Debbie and Simon Rutherford on stage at the Scottish Thistle Awards Lothian and Border final with Grant Hamilton of J Thomson Colour Printers and presenter Jennifer ReochSales Executive for J Thomson Colour Printers, Grant Hamilton and Debbie and Simon Rutherford, Partners of Rutherfords Micro Pub with presenter Jennifer Reoch at the Scottish Thistle Awards Lothian & Borders final.

We're absolutely thrilled to win this prestigious award, and would like to thank our staff who work so hard to offer a really personalised experience. Customers are welcome to try before they buy, and experience some drinks you definitely won't get anywhere else.

Debbie and Simon Rutherford, Partners of Rutherfords Micropub

The Pot Still in Glasgow’s Hope Street received the Best Bar/ Pub award for the west. The bar, which dates back to 1867, has been owned by the Murphy family for eight years. Specialising in whisky, the bar prides itself on finding every customer their perfect dram from its range of 750 whiskies, as well as offering cask ales, proper pies, friendly staff and great service.

Frank Murphy, Julia Smith and Geraldine Murphy from The Pot Still on stage at the Scottish Thistle Awards west final with Kenny Dick of J Thomson Colour Printers and presenter Jennifer ReochKenny Dick of J Thomson Colour Printers presented Frank Murphy, Licensee of The Pot Still, Julia Smith and Geraldine Murphy, with the Best Pub/ Bar Award at the Scottish Thistle awards west final, with presenter Jennifer Reoch. 

On behalf of The Pot Still, our incredible staff and customers, we're so grateful to have our passion and hard work recognised by the Scottish Thistle Awards and will continue to prove ourselves as worthy winners of this award.

Frank Murphy, Licensee of The Pot Still

The Criterion Bar in St Andrews was named the Best Bar/ Pub for the Central, Fife & Tayside region. Despite being small in size, the bar serves a selection of 166 whiskies, 82 gins, more than 30 rums and six cask ales. It strives to ensure that everyone who walks through its doors experiences Scotland at its best, serving locally sourced food and drink and their famous Cri Pies from morning to midnight. The pub also created its own The Criterion Tartan used in the fixed interior seating as well as ties.

Members of the Criterion Bar team receiving award from Grant Hamilton of J Thomson Colour Printers and presenter Jennifer Reoch at the Scottish Thistle Awards Central, Fife & Tayside Final

Pictured at the Scottish Thistle Awards Central, Fife & Tayside Final is Sales Executive for J Thomson Colour Printers, Grant Hamilton, and Lauren Bell, Rebecca Scott, Phil Gauld, Hazel Latto, Kaskia Suski, Bart Suski and Steve Latto from Criterion Bar and presenter Jennifer Reoch.

To win this award is a humbling and phenomenal achievement for our wee traditional bar that strives to give visitors and regulars a taste of what amazing products Scotland has to offer. Along with the best hospitality in the world, we have an amazing team behind us that strive to make sure every visit is an experience.

Steve and Hazel Latto, Owners of The Criterion Bar

These businesses will be joined by The Tippling House in Aberdeen, winner of Best Pub at the Aberdeen City and Shire Tourism Awards, and the Sligachan Hotel, Isle of Skye, winner of Best Pub at the Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards 2019 at the National Final in March.

Watch this space to see out who will take home the coveted national award. 

For more information on the Scottish Thistle Awards, visit: www.scottishthistleawards.co.uk