THE BEST of Scotland is getting bigger as Pete Irvine`s guidebook Scotland: The Best is relaunched in a new bumper edition.
The leading events organiser`s book, which started as a slim volume in 1994, now includes the author`s top 10 restaurants in Glasgow and Edinburgh, with some interesting results.
A spokesman for Mr Irvine`s publishers said: "The new restaurants and hotels that have opened in the past two years have been visited and reviewed. If they aren`t in the book, they don`t cut the mustard."
Edinburgh, however, appears to have edged ahead of Glasgow. Its top restaurants collected more ticks - Mr Irvine`s personal stars.
Skye, Inverness and the rest of the Highlands, meanwhile, have experienced a resurgence.
The new edition, for the first time, includes a section on spas. It also devotes space to farm shops, part of an extended deli and food chapter.
The best farm shop, for the record, is Gloagburn Farm in Tibbermore, near Perth. The book is now firmly aimed as much as Scots residents as at tourists.
Scotland: The Best this year also takes time to celebrate some of the people who have helped make Scotland the destination it is. Among them are the Hendersons, the family behind the pioneering Edinburgh vegetarian restaurant that was, in its own way, an original farm shop.
"It was the first of its type in Britain or anywhere and pre-dated the vegetarian and organic revolution by decades," said Mr Irvine. "It has remained at the forefront of healthy eating for 40 years."
Mr Irvine somehow finds time to research his book - he stresses it is very much a collection of his own opinions - while running the events company behind Edinburgh`s Hogmanay and the annual Glasgow Art Fair.