Archive for August, 2010

We visited Papilio in another guise many years ago and had a pretty grim meal (risotto made with long grain rice e.g.). We vowed never to go back but a domestic emergency meant that we started looking for somewhere to eat in Bruntsfield at 8.45 on a Friday evening – always a challenge. Our favourite places were booked but there were free tables in Papilio so we thought we’d give it another chance. Big mistake. Very mediocre Anglo-Italian food. Our aubergines with parmesan had a miserly slice of aubergine and a lot of tinned tomato sauce. I had a calzone (folded) pizza with more tinned tomato sauce; Anne had pasta with ham and asparagus.

The availability of tables should have been a warning. Food was poor, service was nothing great. The only saving grace was the house wine which, as the waiter said, was good. The website has rave reviews – maybe we were unlucky but for sure we won’t take the risk of going back. A take-away pizza and a bottle of wine from Oddbins would have been better at half the price.

Visited, August 2010. About £50 for 2, including 1 bottle of wine and coffees.


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Mother India Cafe in Jeffrey St in Edinburgh is the first Edinburgh outlet of the well-known Mother India group in Glasgow. I’ve eaten there a few times and also in Glasgow. Similar menus – so called ‘tapas style’ where you order a number of small dishes. Three of us had Saag Paneer, Butter chicken, Lamb Mussala, Okra and Tomatoes, spicy fish cakes and spiced haddock with a garlic pitta and a portion of rice. Poppadums and excellent coriander chutney to start. Excellent food and, like Rivage in Easter Road, shows how good Indian food can be – a far cry from the the post-pub curry house. Interestingly, the ambiance here is rather different from the Glasgow branch – here it is sophisticated and, dare I say it, a bit middle class – in Glasgow, it’s more urban and chaotic. But that’s just reflecting the difference in the cities. Glasgow wins on the view though – the Kelvingrove Art Galleries. But try either – you will not be disappointed.

About £37 for 3, including some Kingfisher beer. Visited August 2010.

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Lupe Pintos Deli Edinburgh

I’ve mentioned Lupe Pintos before (see post on suppliers) but it deserves another mention. It’s a great Mexican deli with lots of different kinds of chillis, hot sauces etc and the best chorizos and guacamole in town. They also do good wine – I was in there buying some chorizos and started chatting about Alberinho wine – one of my favourites but hard to get. Then I discovered the owner was an expert in this wine and I ended up with a 20 minute tutorial on the wine and its makers (if you haven’t come across it, it’s a white from northern Spain – low yield grapes). Bought a bottle of course – expensive so we’re keeping it to drink with some nice seafood. Yes, wine is cheaper in the supermarkets but you don’t get the unusual ones nor the conversation. One of my favourite delis.

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I’d been to Indigo Yard for a coffee a few times but had never had a meal there before. Unusually, I went for a working breakfast and had chorizo hash with fried egg. Very good. My colleague’s banana pancakes also looked good. Beware – their web site is dreadful – how design hides content.

Visited August 2010

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The Cellar Door Restaurant was the Olive Branch Bistro on George IV bridge but changed hands because of illness. I’d eaten there a couple of times when it was the Olive Branch – I liked the food but it was never very busy when we went there. This lack of busyness continued when we went for lunch so rather lacking in atmosphere. Fixed price lunch for £11.50 for 2 courses – a short menu which looked good. But there was a special – the Surprise Menu which was the chef’s choice and I’m always up for this. I did well – chicken and sun-dried tomato terrine – a large helping, followed by perfectly cooked leg of lamb. The food was excellent and, reputedly, the patisserie upstairs is good too.  I’d be happy to go back.

Visited, August 2010.

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