Martin Wishart's Michelin starred and flagship Edinburgh branch showcasing food that pleases on all levels in a highly comfortable setting
This was an outstanding meal and was without doubt the best restaurant experience from doing all four Michelin starred restaurants in Edinburgh. Everything clicked on every level from the off – the decor, the atmosphere, the hospitality and above all, the food. Based on my brief visit I place this is the top venue for a top occasion in Edinburgh and would recommend it without hesitation if you are in the city and want the very best for the best occasion.
This was already a highlight from the moment the first canapé of opening beetroot macaroon with horseradish cream was served. The wafer-like texture of the macaroon with carefully pitched beetroot flavour with creamy softness of the horseraddish sauce was simply a winner and actually reminded me of that served at The Fat Duck. This was followed by a cep veloute which was sweetened with soy sauce and was superb. Breads opted for were the mini baguettes which although weren’t anything to sing about were done well in being not too overloaded with flour and having the perfect stretch.
The duck with red cabbage had such a soft texture with a lovely and sweet chutney to accompany. The veal tartare was luxurious and good to see its brioche croutons, foie gras, truffle, veal and delicately pickled sweet potato as an original take. However, although it was nicely designed, I felt the other elements slightly overshadowed the actual veal which was difficult to trace.
The ementhal soufflé was, in no finer words, the asbolute dog’s nuts! This was frankly even nicer than the signature version at Le Gavroche as this was even lighter but with the real essence of cheese in a punchy way. I enjoyed Michel Roux’s version very much, but as his sits on top of a bed of double cream, you do feel somewhat that doing a marathon before a Gavroche visit is in order.
The warm salmon with warmed butter foam, unripened grape jus with tapioca and seewed on top was nothing short of happiness on a plate. With the parsnip purée, this produced a delightfully, salmony, smokey, luxurious thing in which the salmon just FELL apart. The beef with cheese, bone marrow and shiraz from South Africa (a cinsault-grenache blend in its last vintage) was a lovely, original and medium bodied wine to go with the beef – not too many tannins either which is exactly what I was looking for. I must say as well that the jus here was excusite and in its simplicity, there really wasn’t much to say against this dish in anyway.
Both chocolate and lemon desserts were utterly superb. I genuinely couldn’t get enough of these and my endorphin levels were going through the roof by this stage at the whole show just didn’t seem to falter. The lemon especially was not only wonderfully fressh and citric but was delighted that the honeycomb was nicely done as well as is one of my favourite things – it almost slightly gooey in the centre and was sweet with no bitter after taste as well. The lemon grass sorbet was frankly a stroke of genius and it rounded off the meal to a very high standard.
This for me is an example of where everything is right in the world. Although there are more visually striking dishes and breads available in other 1 and 2 star venues, I would rather have this type of cooking on any occasion over elaborate trickery as the flavours were simply that good. Martin Wishart’s food comfortably enters the 2 Michelin starred field for me irrespecive of AA Rosettes and I do hope this becomes a reality one day. In terms of the purpose of eating out, when it has this sort of impact on your mouth and senses and overall happiness, is there any other purpse to fulfil?
Food Grade: 91%
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