This Scottish Restaurant Was One Of The First To Win A Michelin Green Star For Sustainability

First announced in 2020, the Michelin Green Star considers not only environmental practices but also ethical ones, from the producers and supplies used to source food to the ways in which waste is reduced and materials are considered throughout the culinary process. For a restaurant to be honored with the distinction, sustainability must be at the core of operations, resulting in an experience that is excellent not only from an ecological perspective but also from a hospitality-based standpoint. From foraging to farming, restaurants designated with the Michelin Green Star prioritize preservation and conservation, often going above and beyond to act as leaders within their communities through charitable efforts and educational initiatives.

Restaurants must be located in England, Scotland, Wales, or Ireland and listed in the Michelin Guide to be considered for the title. Upon an inspector's visit, the ingredients used to build the menu, environmental footprint, and overall systems of the establishment are evaluated. In the first year of the program, only 23 restaurants were granted the star — and just one in Scotland: Inver.

A menu centered on environment

At Inver, sustainability isn't simply a buzzword. The concept has served as a compass for the entire operation. "The people, landscape, plants, and animals that guide and shape our menus are an ecosystem, in which we are one evolving part. If they don't thrive, neither can we," co-owner Pamela Brunton told Michelin. When Brunton opened Inver in 2015 with partner Rob Latimer, she was no stranger to thoughtful culinary practices, having worked at Noma and other Michelin-starred restaurants in Europe. 

Located on Scotland's west coast, Inver's quaint setting offers a compact menu that makes the most out of local ingredients: Oysters and shellfish taken from nearby waters, organic pork raised on farms less than a 3-hour drive away, and drinks mixed with whiskey distilled on a nearby isle. "Sustainability here, for me, is very much about upholding our community and our life. It's not only about us, but about contributing to all the other people around us, without which Inver couldn't thrive," Brunton told The Modern House. You're not just connecting with those you're feeding, but with those who've grown or raised the produce." It's clear Inver epitomizes what the Michelin Green Star represents.