On Sunday 17 June, two members of The Saint visited Rogue, located on South St., for their Father’s Day brunch event. The event, which showcased Veuve’s new champagne line, gave The Saint an insight in Rogue’s take on brunch. Sven Struan Finlay provides his thoughts on the event’s drinks and atmosphere while Sasha Veliko-Shapko discusses the food and overall experience.
Upon entry, we were greeted warmly and seated in the heart of the restaurant. The restaurant was quiet when we arrived, but we did arrive towards the end of the conventional brunch period. Our waitron was kind and swiftly brought some bubbly to get us going. Rogue is a particularly quaint restaurant. The relaxing jazz and R&B music were accompanied by a dark, mysterious atmosphere and the soft murmurs of families celebrating Father’s Day. I felt as though I had been transported off South Street and into a chic restaurant in Soho.
Rogue’s Father’s Day event was in collaboration with Veuve and the champagne we had was superb. Each glass had its own unique, exquisite taste. The “original” Veuve Yellow Label lead us into the first course and was a delight. The second champagne, Veuve Clicquot Rose, had a fruity nose that led me to enjoy so much that it is now one of my favourite rosés. Next, we had Veuve Clicquot Rich, NV. This was a champagne presented as a cocktail with lime. It was light, sweet and smooth and it blew me away. To finish off we were given a glass of Ruinart Rose, NV. This champagne was definitely the king of the restaurant and I would highly recommend a glass of this when celebrating a special occasion.
All in all, the drinks and the vibe of the restaurant were fantastic and I would give it my highest recommendation. Rogue is definitely a competitor in the big league of St Andrews restaurants but surprisingly the items on the brunch menu are generally good value for money. This makes Rogue a viable alternative to the other high-end restaurants in St Andrews.
Food: Our first course of croissants and butter, while sounding fairly ordinary, was nothing of the sort. The croissants were excellent: dark, warm, and flaky. The croissants were baked with enough skill that they did not require the butter provided.
For our second course, we had an option of several variations on a traditional eggs benedict. The “Variations of Eggs Benedicts” could be the next symphony the St Andrews brunch scene needed. They featured the classic “eggs benedict” with ham, “eggs royale” involving salmon, “eggs florentine” for the spinach-eating types, and finally the most unique combination: “eggs Hebridean” for the hard-blooded Scots of St Andrews. The wide selection of poached eggs on toast in Rogue ensures there is an option for everyone. I opted for a non-adventurous benedict: the original egg and ham on toast.
As a seasoned brunch connoisseur, I hold a high standard for my benedict. Thankfully, the muffin was perfectly crispy, adding the crunchy texture that sloppy benedict muffins lack. I am of the camp who believe any sandwich cannot be perfect if the bread is lacking in any way. In that case, the precision in the first and second courses gives Rogue two thumbs up in the food department.
The Rogue experience, from start to finish, delivered on excellence and class. Our server warmly greeted us and carefully explained the brunch. While we were both surprised by Rogue’s extensive array of champagne, I was especially astonished to learn they operate a fully functional in-house gin distillery, with their own gin line called “Felons.” The food was impeccable and the music comforting. Rogue’s service, atmosphere and unique gin distillery elevates its status to be a rightful competitor among other high-end restaurants in St Andrews.