The highly popular Aberdeen Restaurant Week gets underway today, with more than 40 restaurants and cafes set to offer diners special lunches, dinners, tasting menus and afternoon teas.

Returning to the city for the seventh time and organised by city centre BID Aberdeen Inspired, the week - now become a Foodie Fortnight – runs from today (Monday November 1) until Sunday November 14.

Diners can choose from a huge range of cuisines, including Thai, Italian, Spanish, Scottish and Nepalese, as well as the best coffee, cakes and ice cream.

Aberdeen Restaurant Week provides the perfect platform for restaurants and cafes across Aberdeen to showcase what they have on offer and gives diners the chance to experience a wide range of food choices while taking advantage of the special deals offered by all the participating eateries.

All the restaurants signing up for Aberdeen Restaurant Week are making a unique set price dining offer available throughout the fortnight.

The range of dining experiences includes lunch, dinner, afternoon teas and tasting menus and now includes restaurants out with the city centre.

The event last ran in November 2020, when it was extended to run over two weeks and saw a record number of venues participating, welcoming diners back to their venues after long periods of lockdown.

Adrian Watson, chief executive of Aberdeen Inspired, said the popular event was a great way to encourage visitors back into the city centre.

“We are delighted to be bringing back Aberdeen Restaurant Week from today and I’m sure diners will have a fantastic time trying out new venues or tasting different food over the next two weeks. After the challenges of the past 18 months, this is a fantastic opportunity for restaurants, cafes and bistros to bring in new customers while saying thanks to existing customers through the special deals on offer.

“The timing is perfect for a pre-Christmas treat and the chance to combine a dining experience with a shopping trip or a visit to some of the city’s cultural attractions or to make a night of it and stay over in the heart of the city centre.

“We all know what city businesses have been going through since the start of the pandemic and Aberdeen Restaurant Week is the catalyst which brings residents and visitors to the centre of Aberdeen to enjoy what’s on offer.”

Martin Widerlechner is marketing and sales manager at McGinty's Group, which has several venues signed up for ARW.

He said: “It's great to see Aberdeen Restaurant Week return once again. It always creates a fantastic vibe around this city at the time of the year when the hospitality industry traditionally goes through a quieter period in the build-up to Christmas. Five of our sites are taking part this year and we can't wait to showcase the best we've got to offer to the new and returning customers.”

Molly’s Bistro in the Aberdeen Douglas Hotel is also taking part again this year.

“We are delighted to once again be taking part in Aberdeen Restaurant Week. As a local independent favourite in the heart of the city centre, it gives people the chance to get an insight into what Molly’s has to offer all year round,” said food and beverage manager Catherine Shaughnessy.

“We pride ourselves on the fact that we cook using fresh local ingredients and our menu showcases that. We very much look forward to welcoming regular and new customers in the coming weeks.”

Foodstory on Thistle Street is another of the restaurants which has taken part in the event before and has signed up again this year.

HR and Business Development Manager Jonny Chirnside said they’re excited to see restaurant week return to Aberdeen and will be offering a three-course meal for £20.

“It’s fantastic to have an event like this in Aberdeen and it’s cool to see all the restaurants and cafes in the city getting behind it and showcasing the diversity of what we have to offer,” he said. “It’s encouraging too, to see the people of Aberdeen getting behind this and really responding by turning up in numbers to support all the restaurants and cafes taking part.

“We’re really looking forward to be taking part again this year and it’s never been more important. Since coming out of lockdown, there has been a slow build up to normality. Some people have been desperate to get back to restaurants, but others have been more cautious, and we respect that. That’s why we’re very fortunate in Aberdeen to have an event such as this which gives everyone the chance to return to restaurants and cafes in a safe and responsible manner.”

For more information on Aberdeen Restaurant Week and the most up to date list of all participating venues, visit www.aberdeeninspired.com/festival/restaurant-week