Dundonian Nachos


In my quest to bring you, my reader, the best of nachos in the UK, I decided to test out the nachos in my hometown-of-the-moment, Dundee City aka Juteopolis. Nacho County: Dundee City/Angus Nacho Location: Papa Joe's

On a recent work night out, we were treated to a meal at theme restaurant, Papa Joe's (locations in Dundee, Dunfermline and Stirling!). After downing a few beers at another local establishment, we made our way to Papa Joe's ready for a fine Italian meal in Dundee.

I initially thought that Papa Joe's was trying to be an American themed restaurant along the lines of TGI Friday's, but, after a quick glance at their website, I soon discovered that good old Papa Joe has been serving Italian food to the fine people of Scotland since 1933!

Be that as it may, I'll bet that those menus from the 1930s were lacking in the one thing that caught my attention this fine spring day in Bonnie Dundee. Namely - NACHOS!!

As part of the rules of the game, if they have nachos there, I have to try them. This was even better, because someone else was paying for it!

After a wait of a few minutes, the nachos were finally produced.


(Consult picture at left during nacho description)

Good: Chips were mostly whole, salsa wasn't poured on top of nachos

Bad: Cheese a little bland

The best part about these Dundonian Nachos is that they tasted a lot better than they looked.

I was a little disappointed about the absence of lettuce, but can't really fault Dundee or Papa Joe's for that, since it doesn't seem to be a universal topping, even in Texas.

The guacamole over here tends to be some type of pre-processed substance and probably comes out of a tube, which, again, you can't blame Dundee, because that's the way that Taco Bell does it. But it tasted pretty good.

Extra bonus points because they included jalapenos (hard to see but they're in the middle of the photo, kind of trapped beneath the guacamole and cheese).

All in all, a surprisingly pleasant nacho experience in the land of the Scots.

Well done, Papa Joe's!

(Nacho grading system coming soon)

The City of Discovery


That is what Dundee calls itself, "The City of Discovery" (at least according to the tourist board and the City Council).

You can see it everywhere in these cheesy tourist announcements they put up (left) in this hideous font. I don't know if it's Comic Sans, but it's close enough.

Mostly I've heard people outside of DD1 (The Dundee post code. Yep. I'm down) refer to the town as "Scumdee" or "Not so Fundee".

That's because, once upon a time, Dundee was in a pretty bad shape.

How bad? Imagine if you took Detroit and moved it to Scotland.

The major employer in Dundee, up to around the First World War was the jute industry. Around the turn of the century about 50,000 people were working in mills in Dundee. The mill owners would import jute from India, a type of plant fiber, into Dundee, where there was a skilled labor force (due to the linen mills in the area) and a healthy supply of whale blubber, for lubricating the jute and the machinery.

Then, the mill owners, looking to cut costs, had a brilliant idea - "Wait a minute, instead of

shipping the jute up to Dundee, where it's cold and rainy, why don't we move the factories down to India. Where we can pay people even LESS!!"

And that's exactly what they did.

Now it's marginally better, but it's still the teen-pregnancy capital of Great Britain.

So why is Dundee called the "City of Discovery"? Because this is where the Polar exploration ship RRS Discovery was built and now has a home.