Kirsten Gilmour

Originally from New Zealand, I now live in the Highlands of Scotland. Given the opportunity to come to Britain after winning the Toque d’Or in NZ in 1999. I then found myself travelling around the UK & Europe looking for adventure after working in London and the SE of England. On arriving in Scotland, I took a wee break from professional cookery using this time to discover some of Scotland’s hidden gems by bike & on foot I explored the Highlands of Scotland and beyond. Immersing myself in food and adventure while learning about the people and their cuisines on the road. I made my home in Scotland in 2002 and have never looked back. I found my chefing feet again when I opened The Mountain Café in Aviemore in 2004. My aim has always been to create food that is fresh, delicious and different - but approachable to all. Taking top notch Scottish ingredients & giving them a Kiwi twist. Covid-19 appearing in 2020 has forced me to change direction I have developed my café into a bakery which is more mobile and can be more robust when unexpected situations arise. This situation has brought all my passions closer to me and I have worked hard to create a bakery that is an integral part of this amazing community we live in, I believe food brings the best out in people & brings communities together. In 2015 I wrote ‘The Mountain Café Cookbook’ and am presently working on my next book. - albeit a wee bit delayed as a result of everything happening in 2020. Throughout all of this I am still biking and exploring where I can – especially overseas. Always looking for that wee bit of inspiration to spark the next recipe or even big idea. Always looking to see how I can share it all with people & inspire.

Special subjects

New Zealand cookery & food. Recipe writing. Sharing food with all.

Languages spoken

English - translated in to Kiwi though!

Regular work

Baking, cooking and making coffee at KJ's Bothy Bakery (formerly The Mountain Cafe Aviemore.) As the owner I also have the joy of getting all the other jobs done that are needed to make the whole shebang run.

Advisory boards / Awards

Winner 'Best Independent Cafe UK' CafeLife 2015. Winner 'Best Cafe in Scotland' 2017 Scottish Food awards. Winner 'Best Independent Cafe UK' 2017 CafeLife. Winner 'Independent Cafe of the year UK' 2018 sME awards. Winner 'Independent Scottish Highlands Cafe of the year' 2019 sME Awards. Winner 'Woman of Inspiration' Highland Business Woman awards 2020

Commercial interests

Bakery owner. Author / Blogger - writing & sharing recipes with a NZ twist. Working as much as possible with our local community and food suppliers. Inspiring people to enjoy fresh, local food more and be less scared of creating it for themselves.

Kirsten Gilmour