Everything’s coming up rosettes for Jedburgh’s Capon Tree restaurant

Alasdair and Ashley Wilkie, owners of Capon Tree Town House, with staff Beth Thomson, left, and Rhianne Miller, right, celebrating their fir st AA Rosette.
Alasdair and Ashley Wilkie, owners of Capon Tree Town House, with staff Beth Thomson, left, and Rhianne Miller, right, celebrating their fir st AA Rosette.

A Borders restaurant is celebrating having been awarded an Automobile Association rosette and a four-star silver award in the organisation’s latest guide.

The Capon Tree Town House in Jedburgh High Street prides itself on offering fine dining based on traditional French cuisine and has been chasing a rosette for the past two years.

“This is a really good acknowlegement to have but a really difficult one to get,” said Ashley Wilkie, co-owner of the Capon Tree with husband Alasdair.

“We’re delighted. It’s been a goal of ours for a long time.

“We would like to thank our customers and our fantastic team for making this possible.”

Ashley, 27, originally from Northern Ireland, runs front of house, and Alasdair, 35, from Tweedbank, works in the restaurant’s kitchen.

The couple have owned the restaurant for the last four years and have transformed the former pub into a 35-seat restaurant and cocktail lounge downstairs and a bed-and-breakfast upstairs.

The restaurant and its four rooms were assessed from top to bottom by an AA inspector this summer, with the incognito guest visitor only revealing his identity to hotel staff after his stay.

“He gave us a full debrief afterwards and he had assessed absolutely everything about the Capon Tree,” added Ashley.

“I believe it’s our quality of service and our overall dining experience that made us stand out.

“Now we’re looking ahead to next year and aiming to pick up two or more rosettes.”

The Capon Tree employs eight full and part-time staff including asommelier.

One to five rosettes are awarded by the AA as an accreditation for culinary excellence, and the AA Restaurant Guide lists its rosette-awarded restaurants bi-annually.

The CaponTree joins Windlestraw at Walkerburn, and Keloso’s Cobbles and Ednam House as the region’s only accredited establishments.

In May the Capon Tree was one of four in the Borders voted among the top 100 in Scotland, and last year was named best in the country for French cuisine at the Travel and Hospitality Awards, as well as best restaurant for the second year at Scotland’s Business Awards Borders.