Irn-bru, deep-fried Mars Bars, erm , haggis… Edinburgh’s never been thought of as a hot bed of culinary delights. But, loosen your kilts, ladies, as things appear to have changed…
We had 48 hours to sample the best food Edinburgh had to offer – the perfect guide to lining your stomach for a comedy marathon come festival season or a brisk walk up Arthur’s Seat.
Talking of which, just a stone’s throw from Arthur’s Seat and Holyrood Park with its vistas across the city, 21212 on Royal Terrace (21212restaurant.co.uk) is perfectly positioned for a post-amble feast. But don’t expect a meat and two veg affair here. Michelin-starred chef Paul Kitching has created a five-course every-changing menu (£68 for five-course dinner) from which diners can choose between two starters, a soup, two mains, cheeses and two desserts (hence the 21212 name). From a three-layered soup topped with sweet potato and carrot foam and a marmite and yoghurt wafer, to being served a porridge and Horlicks nightcap from a paper thimble, you won’t know quite what to expect of this gastronomic adventure land. But do expect a lot of foam – Paul’s signature touch, and one that marks him out as Edinburgh’s answer to Heston Blumenthal (or maybe it’s the other way round…).
Bellies at bursting point, it’s well worth splashing out on one of the four exclusive rooms in 21212′s restored Georgian house, complete with roll-top baths and a wee dram by your bedside for pure indulgence, from £175 for bed and breakfast. The best bit of course being that you then get to sample the breakfast too! Smoked salmon and caviar? Don’t mind if we do.
The next day, work off some of those calories with a spot of shopping – head to Prince’s Street for high-street brands and views of Edinburgh Castle, or Harvey Nick’s on St Andrew’s Square and Multrees Walk, which boasts Armani and Mulberry, for more of an Ab Fab spree.
After a cocktail or two at Treacle Bar & Kitchen (Treacleedinburgh.co.uk) on Broughton Street (their Rose and Lavender Crusta with Grey Goose vodka, rose liquer and lemon and lavender syrup is divine), head into One Day territory – Edinburgh’s Old Town – with its atmospheric lanes and cobbles.
Nestled in amongst the street performers and tartan shops on the Royal Mile, you’ll stumble across Angels With Bagpipes (Angelswithbagpipes.co.uk) – the city’ s hottest restaurant right now. And with waiters who are almost as tasty as the locally-sourced scallops on offer, you can see why. Hole up for the evening in one of the restaurant’s lantern-lit nooks to enjoy a feast of tender-to-the-touch lamb with macaroni, fresh peas and kidney followed by a passionfruit, creme, mango sorbet and coconut papaya salad dessert, washed down with a Bellini Royal.
Sightseeing, shopping, and sampling the local cuisine – by this point the sleeper train home was calling our name. But Edinburgh, we’ll be back… One Day.
FABULOUS READER OFFERS
- 21212 Restaurant with rooms is offering all Fabulous readers a complimentary glass of champagne when dining on the five-course lunch menu until August 31, 2012. Call 0131 523 1030 to make a reservation, quoting ‘Fabulous’.
- All Fabulous readers will receive a complimentary bottle of house wine with every lunch or dinner for two, from Angels With Bagpipes’ Table D’Hote menu, between 12-6pm until January 31, 2013. Call 0131 220 1111 to make a booking, quoting ‘Fabulous’.