Download July 2011 - Bite Magazine

Download July 2011 - Bite Magazine

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:21 Page 1


Me I’m


Your Independent, Local Guide to

Eating and Drinking in Edinburgh

July 2011

Restaurant & Bar Reviews

Food, Wine, Beer,

Cocktails, Whisky, Listings




Bite goes Mexican

See our feature from p.12 and win some flaming fajitas from The Smokestack p.29.

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 28/6/11 23:32 Page 2

Fresh, Simple, Sustainable

Locally sourced Scottish fish and shellfish on The Shore

New Stockbridge location

0131 538 6131, 15 North West Circus Place, Stockbridge •



Food served all day. Fresh, local, Scottish produce.

Premium wine & spirits list

Scottish craft beers & ciders

Exclusive range of Innis and Gunn beer

Whisky Tastings

Iconic views over The Mound

The Mound 4-7 North Bank Street, Edinburgh.

Bar & Bistro

0131 225 7224

Whisky Shop

0131 225 1532

Hope to

see you


BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:21 Page 3

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:21 Page 4

‘The best of Scottish produce prepared

for you in the heart of Edinburgh’

Deli & Licensed Cafe

15 Blackfriars Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1NB

Delicious all day breakfast

available on Sundays

Tel: 0131 556 6922

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:21 Page 5

Editor, The Ship,



Leila Arfa

Frances Bentley

Mark Earl

Rachel Edwards

Lea Harris

The Insider

Donald Mavor

Neil Miller

Kelly Smith

Sharon Wilson

James Wrobel

Front Cover

Thanks to Lyndsey Lee

Wilson, actress, Linsey

Gilhooley, make-up artist

and Simone Hilliard for


About Bite


ite is an independent magazine that is distributed to about

250 bars, restaurants, delicatessens, cafés and the like

throughout Edinburgh. It has been published since 2003..

Our reviews and articles are written by passionate locals, who really

know their onions, wine, beer and cocktails.

We receive no funding and revenue is generated primarily by

advertising but this in no way affects how we review restaurants. Our

reviewers, publisher excepted, have no involvement whatsoever with

advertising and their remit is always “write the truth as you find it”.

We aim to provide a handy, informative, up to date and credible guide

to the Edinburgh Eating and Drinking scene.

Thanks for picking up Bite and have a great foodie month.

Love from Bite x

In this issue

07 Review The Salisbury Arms

09 Review La P’tite Folie

11 Review The Grill Room

12 Mexican Feature

18 Tequila

19 Cocktails

20 Recipe By Thomasina Miers

22 The Los Cardos Guide to Salsa

23 Beer

24 The Insider

25 Gourmet Girl

26 Chillis

27 Off the Trolley

28 What’s in Season

29 Offers/Competitions

30 Listings


Publisher/Editor I Sharon Wilson I 01383 616126 I M 07780 763613

I I • Assistant Editor I Kelly Smith

I • Design I Donna Earl I

© Bite Magazine 2011 – All items contained within this publication are copyright to Bite Publishing

and cannot be taken or edited without the permission from the copyright holder.

This magazine is printed on sustainable paper.

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:21 Page 6

Dine within the unique and

beautiful setting of Georgian

townhouse 28 Queen Street and

enjoy exquisite food with

mouth-watering finesse and

personable, unfussy service.

BITE-SIZED Menu du Jour Offer:

Enjoy three one-of-a-kind courses for only £18.75

(thatÊs three for the price of two) along with a special pass to

the members-only bar upstairs

The Dining Room at 28 Queen Street is uniquely placed within

the Members’ Rooms of The Scotch Malt Whisky Society (home to

the world-widest selection of single cask, single malt whiskies).

Please see our website for opening

hours and more details or call

0131 220 2044

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:21 Page 7

Review: The Salisbury Arms

A village pub in town


he Salisbury Arms, on the southside

site facing the Commonwealth pool,

Thas recently opened following a total

revamp. Branded as a local ‘village pub’, it’s a

great spot to head after a Holyrood Park jaunt.

The general vibe is a pleasingly coherent blend

of cosy pub-cum-hunting-lodge, with a bit of

trendy plush thrown in, and a beer garden

crying out for that elusive sunny afternoon!

The menu has plenty of options to please the

casual and formal diner alike, and boasts wellsourced

ingredients. Whilst looking through

choices, we started with some of their house

bread (£2.60), still-warm slices of white bread

cooked with rosemary and red onions.

We were ready to order when a genuine

!STOP PRESS! moment occurred: a late

addition to the menu of scallops with black

pudding and apple (£6). The Silver Fox got his

claim in first, but I did steal a few forkfuls!

Each bite brought together the slightly-seared

caramelised scallops, a touch more sweetness

from the soft apple, and contrasting spice

from the black pudding. My starter (£4.95) was

equally satisfying, featuring three giant grilled

portobello mushrooms, topped with crisp

bacon. The addition of a fair bit of chilli and

garlic to pique the palate made it really fly.

Main courses were also from the day’s

specials. Mine, a Gallic charmer of roast lamb

(£17.95), Dauphinoise potatoes and a

Provençal-style ratatouille. The lamb was

perfectly tender and pink, and there’s no

better accompaniment than a forkful of

creamy potatoes. More garlic for me then!

The tomatoey stew cut through it all, and

featured large olives which still had a firm

bite. Mister went for the veal dish (£13.95).

Not for the faint-hearted, this was a size-able

Parmesan-encrusted escalope of veal, served

atop a huge pile of al-dente lingue, which

was dressed with another tomato-based


To finish we had the pudding sharing platter

(£10.50), which just erred on the wrong side

of epic. Highlights were proper ‘adult’ dark

chocolate brownies with a dense vanilla ice

cream, and rich-baked cheesecake with berry

compôte. Slightly underwhelming were the

lemon tarte and Eton mess, the latter of

which should have had more fruit and

meringue to contrast against the cream.

Minor gripe aside, we were really impressed,

and welcomed this newbie with open arms!

(L. Arfa)

The Salisbury Arms

– 58 Dalkeith Road, Edinburgh EH16 5AD

– 0131 667 4518


Opening hours

Mon-Sat, noon-10pm; Sun 12:30pm-9:30pm

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The best little slice of Poland in Edinburgh just got a lot bigger


now offers authentic Polish artisan bread baked

on our premises



235-241 Leith Walk, Edinburgh

EH6 8NY • Tel: 0131 555 1281


Delicatessen: Mon-Fri 8am-7pm;

Sat 8am-6pm; Sun 9am-6pm

Café: Mon-Sat 8am-6pm;

Sun 9am-6pm



Italian Wine and Beer Cellar

(Underneath Locanda De Gusti)

– Exclusive Artisan Beers imported from Italy.

– Fine Selection of Wines and Cocktails.

– Candelit, relaxed ambience and comfy seating.

– Italian Bar Menu.

– Private Tasting Room.

7-11 East London Street, Edinburgh EH7 4BN, Scotland

0131 558 9581 |

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Review: La P’tite Folie Aka 'The Little Madness'

n competitive, recessionary times

restaurants that survive must be doing

Isomething right. Those that are thriving

surely have a recipe for success

There are two city-centre braches of La

P’tite Folie, Frederick St and Randolph Place

and the latter has a wine bar annexed, Le Di

Vin. All are very popular and have a loyal

following. So what is the winning formula

Mr Bite and I went along to Frederick Street

to find out.

The restaurant is furnished à la French bistro

and in true Gallic style a lightly-dressed

salad, bread and water appear promptly on

the table. I am delighted to see the twicebaked

dolcelatte soufflé with walnuts as a

starter (£5.95) and it doesn’t disappoint.

Light, fluffy and strongly cheesy with

walnuts that are well-toasted to reveal extra

crunch and flavour; a superb twist on a

classic combo. Mr Bite is equally pleased

with his home-made rillettes of duck confit

with caramelised apples (£4.95). He likes the

shredded deeply aromatic meat and

comments that the apples add flavour and


Main course for me is roast halibut with

char-grilled artichoke and asparagus

tagliatelle with slow-roasted tomatoes

(£16.50) and Mr Bite has the fillet of

Aberdeen Angus beef with Roquefort and

garlic butter (£23.45). My halibut is cooked

just so; it is a particularly, meaty fish and I

am pleased that it is still moist inside. The

snow white fish sits on soft tagliatelle, zingy

artichokes and fresh firm asparagus. It is all

bound in an unctuous home-made pesto. Mr

Bite loves his steak. It is cooked rare and is

soft and tender. The chef has done his

produce proud.

Desserts are tarte tatin for me and a white

chocolate crème brûlée for Mr B (both

£4.85). The tart is good but the crème brûlée,

c’est superbe! The glassy, toffee-coloured

topping splinters to reveal a luscious,

decadent creaminess enhanced by the white


Mr Bite and I conclude that excellent

produce, a Gallic pride in the execution of

the dishes, comfortable bistro ambience and

competitive pricing are La P’tite Folie’s

secret to success. (S. Wilson)

La P'tite Folie

– 61 Frederick Street, Edinburgh

– 0131 225 7983

–9 Randolph Place, Edinburgh

– 0131 225 8678


Opening hours

Mon-Sun Lunch 12 noon-3pm and for

Dinner 6pm-11pm

Virginie Brouard, owner of La P'tite Folie,

sponsors a feeding programme for 800

orphans in Ethiopia. For more info visit La

P'tite Folie's website


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Out of Town:

Seafood Sundays in East

Lothian and Fife


or the last two consecutive Sundays I

have had the opportunity to enjoy the

beautiful coastlines around Edinburgh

and, somewhat shockingly, there has even

been sunshine. All that is needed is good

Scottish seafood and bliss is surely


Firstly, a jaunt out to North Berwick to the

Lobster Shack with Mr Bite and Aussie Girl to

enjoy straight-off-the-boat lobster. Chips,

salad, tea, coffee and … wait for it …

champagne (heavens above) are also available.

We ordered three half lobsters, two with

garlic and herb butter and one with a sweet

chilli dressing (£8.50), hand-cut chips,

coleslaw and potato salad come with the

crustaceans and the crab bisque (£3.50) is a

must. We joined other diners sitting around

the harbour and ‘got stuck in’. Lobster from

Fife and from the East Coast is the best I have

tasted anywhere and this seafood shack

certainly does it justice. The perfect Sunday

lunch was eaten whilst people watching and

enjoying views of the magnificent Bass Rock.

Moreover, being canny, I saved the shells for a

lobster stock made later that evening.

The Lobster Shack

– North Berwick Harbour

– Simply follow your nose or visit for more details.

Sunday no. 2 and ‘The Dowager’ suggested an

East Neuk trip to investigate the repair of one

of her broken pottery cats. Having a free day

and a definite alternative agenda I agreed.

You see I knew, thanks to Twitter (and a

certain harbour hussy) that the Crail Food

Festival would be in full swing. There were

stalls from Fife Food Diet, Arbroath Smokies

(with the usual festival queue) Pittenweem

Chocolate and other delicious, local

offerings. But Zut Alors! All the lobster was

gone, eaten, and no more! Rescue came in

the form of the Crail Harbour Gallery and

Tearoom and what a find that is. It has a small

patio out back with fabulous views of the Isle

of May, flowers and a mouth-watering

seafood menu. Dressed crab with sea salt

crisps, salad and mayo (£11ish) times two

please with double chocolate and lemon

drizzle cakes to follow (S. Wilson).



Gallery and


– Shoregate, Crail, Fife KY10 3SU

– 01333 451896



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Review: Grill Room At The Dome


dinburghers will know The Dome as

the place with the beautiful Christmas

decorations, and probably not much

more. I've not met many locals who have

made it their local, and from the range of

languages I overheard while visiting, it was

clear that this George Street establishment

has made it into many a foreign guide book.

Not sure whether there would be any

substance to back the hype, I visited to try

the dinner menu at the Grill Room – and was

very pleasantly surprised.

The choice of starters presented me with that

enjoyable hardship of having to choose

between about four equally delicious

sounding options. In these situations I find it

best to defer responsibility, and asked the

waiter to choose for me. He did, and the

tempura king prawns in peanut sauce with

salted cucumber (£10) was perhaps the

highlight of the evening. It tasted – and

looked – absolutely exquisite and a week later

I am still fondly remembering that spicy

peanut sauce and tongue-burning saltiness of

the cucumber. My partner in food chose the

goats cheese with confit of red and yellow

peppers, served on a garlic crostini (£8.50),

and loved it (I didn't get a try).

We moved onto mains: roast lamb with crispy

beetroot and sautéed potatoes (£21), and

breaded pork escalopes with mushroom

cream sauce and crispy sage. The lamb was

pronounced perfect: well cooked, and

delicious. My pork was heavenly, and came

with a side of potatoes and green beans with

fried onion and pancetta (£17). Any vegetable

that comes with bacon is a definite winner in

my books, and the whole dish was faultless.

We finished with crème brûlée served with

raspberries, and a chocolate caramel mousse

with summer berries (both £6.50): lovely ends

to the meal, if perhaps not as exceptional as

the other courses had been. We washed it all

down with a bottle of Côtes du Rhône (£23),

from a good selection of house wines.

The Dome may be on the tourist route, but to

rule it out as merely a tourist attraction is to

do it a great disservice; it's not just for show.

While the 1930s-eqsue interior is impressive,

with its nostalgic glamour and glass ceiling,

the food more than holds its own in an

opulent and decadent setting (R. Edwards).

Grill Room at the The Dome

– 14 George St, Edinburgh EH2 2PF

– 0131 624 8624


Opening hours

Open 7 days, dinner 5pm-late.


a week later I am still fondly remembering that spicy peanut

sauce and tongue-burning saltiness of the cucumber

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Mexican food combines hot, spicy flavours with a rainbow of fresh, tasty

ingredients; avocados, limes, fish, chillies, cheese, squashes, peppers and

chocolate meld together in this colourful cuisine. Many of these

ingredients are the ultimate ‘feel-good’ foods whether for their health benefits or

for their endorphin-releasing properties. And don’t forget the drinks; in margaritas

and pisco sours citrus, salt and alcohol combine to make refreshing, kick- ass,

cocktails. So don a poncho, pull down your sombrero and satisfy your craving

with our guide to Mexican food.


Some Culinary Info …

Agave Syrup – is a natural sweetener

produced in Mexico from the Blue Agave

the same plant that produces tequila.

Agave syrup has a much lower GI content

than sugar and is also sweeter so you can

use less.

Ceviche – raw fish marinated or ‘cooked’

in citrus.

Chimchanga – a deep-fried burrito

popular in Tex-Mex cuisine.

Chipotle Chilli – a smoky dried

jalapeño that adds heat and a distinctive

earthy flavour to slow cooked dishes. See

jalapeño below.

Churros – Long-ridged fried doughnuts

sprinkled with sugar and dunked in real hot

chocolate – yum!

Cocoa – has god-like status and is used in

both sweet and savoury dishes – you must

use at least 70% cocoa solids though.

Gordita – means ‘little fat one’ in Spanish.

It is a small round pasty made with

cornmeal and stuffed with cheese or meat.


Fajitas – Tex Mex and Mexican term

referring to grilled meat served on a tortilla

with all the trimmings.

Habaneros Chillies – Have a fruity,

citrus flavour. Means the ‘one from Havana’

and is considered the hottest chilli. Also

called Scotch Bonnets.

Herbs – think coriander, thyme, oregano,

mint and parsely.

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:21 Page 14

Image courtesy of Kim Miller, Los Cardos

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:21 Page 15

Image courtesy of Kim Miller, Los Cardos

Hoja Santa – sometimes called a

Mexican pepper it is used to season and

flavour dishes. The very large leaves are

sometimes used to encase tamales for


Jalapeño Chilli – named after the city

Xalapa of Mexico. Cylindrical, oval shape

thick and green but turn red when ripe.

See chipotle above.

Masa – Spanish for dough. Refers to a

maize or cornmeal dough.

Mole – a sauce. According to Rick Bayless,

the ingredients of mole can be grouped

into five distinct classes: Chillis, sour

(tomatillos), sweet (dried fruits and sugar),

spices, and thickeners (nuts and tortillas).

The ingredients are all roasted and ground

into a fine powder or paste, mixed with

liquid and simmered until thick and

pungent. Mole Poblano contains about

twenty ingredients.

Pasilla Chilli – Long and thin and green

turning to dark brown when mature. They

have a raisin-like texture when dried. Mild

to medium and good with seafood.

Poblano Chilli – Means “pepper from

Pueblo”. Heart-shaped and green turning

red/brown when ripe. Mild to medium.

Tex-Mex – Simply American food

influenced by Mexican cusines.

Tamales – steamed masa filled with pork

or chicken, with salsa

and mole. There are also

sweet tamales (tamal de




Tomatillos – small spherical green fruits

often referred to as the green tomato.

They have a tart citrusy flavour and are

used in salsas. Available from Lupe Pintos.

Tortilla – a flatbread made from wheat

flour; when filled with rice, beans or meat

it is referred to as a burrito when covered

with chilli sauce it is an enchilada. A

quesadilla is a tortilla filled with cheese

along with other ingredients (queso is

Spanish for cheese) whilst a taco can be

filled with anything.

Salsa – spicy relish or dip made with

fresh raw ingredients, chillis and vinegar or

citrus juices.

Serrano Chilli – The word ‘serrano;

indicates ‘mountain’. These

chillies are small and

round in shape and

slightly pointed at

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:21 Page 16


the end. They originate from the

foothills of Puebla in Mexico. They are

smooth dark green when unripe and

turns scarlet red, brown, orange, and

then yellow as they ripen with high


Spices – allspice, cinnamon sticks,

anise, cloves are all used in soups,

stocks, marinades and moles.

Vanilla – Pods are indigineous to the

forests of Veracruz in Mexico.


Lupe Pinto’s Deli – 24 Leven Street,

Edinburgh, EH3 9LJ – 0131 228 6241 – and

online at

Real Foods – 37 Broughton Street,

Edinburgh, EH1 3JU 0131 557 1911 and 8

Brougham Street, Tollcross, EH3 9JH 0131

228 1201. Free online delivery

Must Have Recipe


Mexican food Made


– Thomasina Miers. A must

for all lovers of authentic

Mexican food who want to

make their own food at


Mexican Restaurants

in Edinburgh

The Blue Parrot Cantina

– 49 St Stephen Street, Stockbridge

– 0131 225 2941.

Home-cooked Mexican food.

El Barrio – 47 Hanover Street

– 0131 220 6818. Mexican and Latin

American menu

Illegal Jacks – 113-117 Lothian Road

– 0131 622 7499. Mexican Food Made


Los Cardos – 281 Leith Walk

– 0131 555 6619 Fresh takeaway Mexican

food and home of the haggis burrito.

Mariachi – 7 Victoria Street

– 0131 623 0077


Miro’s Cantina Mexicana

– 184 Rose Street – 0131 225 4376.

Pancho Villas – 240 Canongate

– 0131 557 4416.

Tex Mex II – 64 Thistle Street

– 0131 260 9699.

Viva Mexico – 41 Cockburn Street

– 0131 226 5145.

Half Canned Cooks – by Doug Bell

and Rhoda Robertson, owners of Lupe

Pintos. A fab recipe book that shows you

how to utilise many of the ingredients

they stock in their shop.

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:22 Page 17

Mexican Celebrations and Day

of the Dead

or Mexicans, like many cultures,

festivals mark religious and political

Fevents. Often it is the Diaspora who

celebrate more reverently than the locals.

Think of Burn's Nights, Caledonian

Societies and Tartan Day to get an idea.

Cinco de Mayo (5th of May)

commemorates an initial victory of

Mexican forces over the French in the

Battle of Pueblo on May 5, 1862. The

holiday is big in the whole of America

where the date is observed as a

celebration of Mexican heritage and pride,

just as St Patrick's Day is to the Irish. Think

tequilas, Dos Equis and Corona instead of

Guinness but the result is similar: sore

heids and mucho laughter.

Many believe it has become too

commercial in the States and is used as a

marketing opportunity but in Mexico it is

smaller and untainted.

Much more authentic is Dia de Los

Muertos (Day of the Dead) which happens

on the 1st and 2nd of November.

Confused The Day of the Dead is actually

two days and coincides with our All Souls

Day. Blame it on the Aztecs. Their

traditions were incorporated into the

Christian calendar. They celebrate the loss

of loved ones and take their celebrations

to the graveside with offerings of

favourite foods and drink. In many ways it

is like an annual wake with a strong

Aztec/Catholic mix.

Traditionally, sugar skulls and sweet

breads are left/consumed by the

celebrants. People are often confused by

the horror associated with skulls and

skeletons that adorn houses and public

spaces. However, in the West we have

largely lost touch with the life/death

cycle and have a lot to learn from the

relics of pre-history. Birth and death are

merely two faces of the same coin.

Neither to be feared, but both revered.

So on the 1st of November remember to

raise a cup to those you have loved and

lost and hope that you in turn will not be

forgotten. Oh, and also hope that some

things do not lose their spiritual

significance to commerce and/or

American cultural imperialism. (D. Mavor)


BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:22 Page 18


Spirits: Tequila

Don’t swear it off forever


exico’s national drink happens to

be one of the things most wrong

with the drinks trade. I speak of

Tequila of course, rather than beer. Its

mysterious hold over the humble weekend

drinker has curiously not been the subject of

closer scrutiny. Like its Scottish kissingcousin,

Buckfast, its consumption appears to

precede outbreaks of daftness,

obnoxiousness and, occasionally, violence. A

brief poll of Edinburghers suggested that

behaviour of a less than sensible nature was

usually the direct outcome of an evening

spent imbibing the liquid. Some of the

respondents went further, claiming that the

drink ‘isn’t the tastiest, but makes for

interesting conversation later in the night’,

some participants simply turned pale at the

mere mention of Tequila. It would appear

that one disastrous encounter means a

lifetime of fear and avoidance of both

straight Tequila and cocktails which contain

it. A million students have proven that there

is nothing particularly pleasant about rivers

of cheap Tequila, but there is plenty of

quality spirit about, and it’s worth knowing

what to look for in order to get over your

fear of the spirit.

Tequila’s production from blue agave dates

back to the 16th Century – so our fate was

sealed some time ago. The area around the

city of Tequila is delineated, and only spirits

from the specific regions are allowed to

carry the name ‘Tequila’. The juice from the

hand-harvested plants is fermented and then

distilled in large pot stills. The resultant

liquid is clear, with the darker types a result

either of the addition of caramel or oak

ageing. Tequila must legally be 51% blue

agave (the rest can be made up with sugar

and water), but quality spirit is made from

100% agave and will usually indicate this on

the label.

The spirit is sold as four types –

Silver/White Tequila has no aging and

has been kept in stainless steel for a

maximum of 60 days, if at all. This is the

most basic type, and is used mostly for

mixing. Gold/Joven Tequila is simply

silver tequila sweetened with caramel,

making it ideal for specific cocktails and

shots. Reposado Tequila spends at least 2

months in oak, taking on a rounder texture

and smoother taste; these are popular in

Mexico and are markedly higher in quality

than the Silver and Gold types. Finally there

is Añejo Tequila, which spends at least

one year in oak, giving a more robust and

complex taste and aroma. These are often

described as being akin to high quality rums,

whiskies et al; with the high-end spirit

certainly meriting a serious taste. The

application of these spirits in decent

cocktails is also worth noting, with bar staff

still championing the use of tequila with its

unique flavour profile and texture.

Tequila is a much misunderstood drink which

deserves another look; regardless of what

happened the last time you went near it.

Frances Bentley is the Scottish Sales

Manager for Champagne Duval-Leroy and

can be contacted on 07824 775862.

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:22 Page 19

Cocktails: Voodoo Rooms

Mix it up Mexicano-style

ddly enough one of the best

places to drink tequila on its

Oown or in a cocktail isn't even

Mexican. The opulent splendour of

the Voodoo Rooms in West Register

St. hides one of the best selection of

tequilas in town. Not only is the range

great, but there are some useful

tasting notes in their drinks menu to

help you decide. If you're stuck, ask

one of the bar staff who will be more

than happy to pass on a


To get us started we tried a couple of

their cocktails, the Primavera Cooler

(£5.95) and the Amigo-Roni (£5.95). The

Cooler was a refreshing blend of mint,

agave, pear and citrus with a lingering,

slightly bitter finish. A fantastic drink

for a hot summer evening (assuming

we ever get one!).

I'll be honest and say I was

disappointed in the Amigo-Roni. This

was a Mexican take on the classic

Negroni with Herradura Blanco Tequila

in place of the gin and Aperol in place

of the Campari. The drink was

completely overwhelmed by the

bitter citrus flavours of the Aperol

which drowned out any agave that

was there. Next time I'll ask for it to

be served with more tequila and less


However my disappointment was

soon tempered when we moved onto

the tequilas. D ordered the El Tesoro

Reposado (£3.95) and I chose the

Arette Sauve Reposado (£4.95). These

were wonderfully contrasting

reposado (rested) tequilas. The El

Tesoro was earthy, rich, darker in

colour with loads of spice and a long

finish –a perfect after-dinner tequila.

The Arette was subtler, drier with a

hint of sweet citrus and a smooth

finish –a wonderful sipping tequila at

any time.

I decided to finish on an añejo (aged)

tequila and took our barman's

recommendation – the Jose Cuervo

Reserva De La Familia (£6.00) and D

went with the Patrón XO (£3.00). The

Reserva was a rich, slightly sweet, very

smooth tequila with only a hint of

agave. Ideal for those who are used to

good whisky or rum and are put off by

the flavour of agave. The Patrón XO is

quite simply one of the best coffee

liqueurs you're ever likely to taste. Go

and try it for yourself.

They also do a wonderful selection of

rums. But that's for another time...

(M. Earl)

The Voodoo Rooms

– 19a West Register Street, EH2 2AA

– 0131 556 7060



Opening hours

Fri-Sun noon-1am; Mon-Thur 4pm-1am


BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:22 Page 20


Chorizo, potato & thyme

quesadillas from Thomasina Miers


uesadillas [kay-sa-dee-yas], stuffed

with melted cheese and anything

else you fancy, are good at any

time of the day, but particularly in front

of a movie or a big match. Hand some

tortillas around and let everyone fill their


Enough for 4 large quesadillas

Cooking time: 20 minutes

350g potatoes

½ onion, finely chopped

1 clove of garlic, chopped

200g chorizo cooking sausage, chopped

A small bunch of thyme, chopped

Sea salt and black pepper

4 large flour or corn tortillas

400g cheese, grated

Olive oil

Step 1. Cut the potatoes in equal-size

chunks and fry until tender. Leave them to

cool a little and then cut them into 1cm

dice. Cook the onion until soft, add the

garlic and cook for a further 3 minutes.

Mix in the chorizo and potato, turn up the

heat and fry for another 5 minutes. Mix in

the thyme and season. Assemble all the

rest of the quesadilla ingredients.

Step 2. Spread a quarter of the chorizo

mixture on one half of a tortilla and

sprinkle with a fistful of cheese.

Step 3. Fold the tortilla over so that you

have a half moon. Brush it with a little

olive oil (so the tortilla doesn’t stick to

the pan) and place in a hot, dry frying pan

or griddle and cook until golden and crisp.

Repeat with the remaining tortillas.

Step 4. Cut into wedges and serve with

your favourite table salsa.

NOTE I find that a mix of extra mature English

Cheddar and a little grated mozzarella makes

the perfect cheese mix, with a good flavour and

the right gooiness.

“Thomasina Miers is co-founder of Wahaca and the author of MEXICAN FOOD MADE SIMPLE,

Hodder & Stoughton. Her latest TV series, MEXICAN FOOD MADE SIMPLE will air in July on Channel

5. Check out all the show’s behind the scenes action on”

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:22 Page 21


Photographer © Tara Fisher

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:22 Page 22


The Los Cardos Guide to Salsas

from Neil Miller

alsas are a great way of upping the

intake of your five-a-day. They are

Shealthy, fresh and colourful and add

extra depth to dishes as well as being

delicious on their own. At Los Cardos we

have five distinct salsas ranging from mild to

extra hot, but there are literally hundreds of

variations for appetisers and mains as well as

fruit and desert salsas.

In most Mexican cooking, if you have lime,

coriander (or cilantro as it is known in

Mexico) and garlic, you're already off to a

great start. This is no more true than with

Pico De Gallo (pronounced Gah-yo, literally

translates as Rooster's Beak) which is a great

starting point for salsa making.

Incidentally, it is a good idea to give yourself

a little lead time when making salsas; fresh is

great, but a couple hours in the fridge helps

all the flavours blend together.

Basic Pico de Gallo

15 mins to make and serves 2-4

4 medium tomatoes, seeded and diced

1 medium onion, diced

1 small fistful of coriander leaves, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, finely diced

1 lime, juiced

a pinch of salt and pepper

This will last 2-3 days safely in a sealed

container and of course does not merely

have to be served with the Mexican staples.

A Pico bacon and egg sandwich is a

deliciously decadent way to give your

Sunday fry-up a bit more zing and also make

it slightly healthier into the bargain. Add

three spoonfuls of your Pico to a nice ripe

mashed avocado and you have a quick, easy

and delicious Guacamole. Once you have

this basic recipe down, you can then start

fine tuning to your own personal tastes using

Basil, Cumin, Oregano and Parsley, amongst

others. Obviously, when people think of

Mexican food they usually think of spicy

food, and if that is what you crave then it is a

small matter of adding a diced fistful of

jalapeño peppers to this concoction, we also

recommend using diced bell peppers for

added crunch and flavour.

If you do like to play with the hotter end of

the spectrum always remember to

thoroughly wash your hands after chilli

chopping as a bit of chilli pepper juice in the

eye, or any other tender area, is no way to

enjoy your delicious salsa.

A final word of warning, once you start

experimenting you may find it impossible to


Photographer © Kim Miller

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:22 Page 23


Beer: Corona

Who drinks this stuff 23

t has been many years since I’ve had a

Mexican beer. If it wasn’t for Bite

magazine, then it is very unlikely that I

would have a glass in my hand now. Like

most people in the drinks industry I am

incredibly snobbish about the stuff. But it

seems that we are in a tiny minority. A

quick poke around the Internet reveals the

quite staggering statistic that Mexico is the

world biggest producer of beer, with the

vast majority being exported to the U.S.

where Corona is the most popular

imported lager. Unbelievably it is also the

best selling import into the U.K.

Somehow it has reached this position

without being heavily discounted or

indulging in saturation marketing (in fact I

can’t bring to mind a single TV advert or

billboard for it).

Like many of you I was introduced to it

through a clear glass bottle bunged with a

wedge of lime. Although, essentially a nifty

marketing gimmick, the lime has two

profound effects on the beer; It manages to

hide the beer’s essential lack of flavour and

makes it rather difficult to get out of the

bottle. I do not have particularly fond

memories of it, but given its popularity

maybe it’s worth re-appraising.

It is a pale yellow beer that pours rather flat

with no head worth mentioning. The nose

manages to be both mild and unappealing

with a whiff of damp cardboard. The palate

does have a slight bitter citrus flavour, but

the finish is washed out, insipid and watery.

There are worse lagers out there, but none

that are touted as a premium import. Its

popularity is certainly a bit of a mystery

when compared with the quality, value and

consistency of Scotland’s own massproduced


It is also next to useless when paired with

the strong flavours of Mexican cuisine. For

this, you need the vibrancy and zest of an

American IPA to balance the fire of chilli, or

the sweetness of a German bock to work

against any cheesiness.

James Wrobel is the proprietor for

Cornelius Beer and Wine on Easter Rd,

Edinburgh, and can be contacted on

0131 652 2405.

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:22 Page 24


The Insider: Seventh (or seventeenth)

jug of margarita


he edict came down from on high:

“It’s all things Mexican this month,”

which was a challenge…well you

know how I like to, ahem, drift off radar. Of

course, I could have invoked endless

studenty gatherings where, as a nascent

foodie, I would moan about the endless

recycling of ingredients – anyone for more

refried beans – whilst the assembled

company chose to argue about the relative

alcoholic volume of our seventh (or

seventeenth) jug of margarita.

I was thus braced and enervated to note – in

a Jay Rayner review of Fergus Henderson’s

excellent new gaff – that a goodly, (what

would be the collective noun) chiffonade

of chefs from the ‘50 Top Restaurants in the

World’ awards had pitched up in his hotel

off Leicester Square. (Leicester Square

Fergus Hmmm). And some of them (you

beauty!) were Mexican. MEXICAN FINE

DINING. Now, call me irresponsible with a

chemistry set, but how are those elements

going to come together

A little (very little) research, suggests I wasn’t

wide off the mark. Fine dining as a concept

is relatively new to Mexico and confines

itself to the city of that name. On another

count too I was on the money, Mexico’s

highest entry in the world’s top 50, Biko –

up 15 places to No 31 – is actually owned by

chefs from the Basque region of Spain. A

rough translation of the tagline on their

website gives us ‘a continuation of Arzak in

Mexico’. So they are disciples of the great

man himself, Juan Mari Arzak, who once

barrelled to my table, engulfed me in a great

bear hug, and said (through his daughter’s

translation), “Like me you are an anarchist!”

Before returning to his kitchen with no

explanation – it’s just as well she was there, I

thought he said “antichrist.”

The good news is that should you find

yourself holidaying in Mexico, the tasting

menu at Biko is a third of the price of its

European counterparts. And it is ideal for Bite

readers as the website says it is: ‘an achingly

hip place for high rollers’. That’ll be us then.

the tasting menu at Biko is a third of the price of its

European counterparts

Erika del Paso

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:22 Page 25

Gourmet Girl goes Mexican at: Real Foods

ola Biters! For this

month’s Mexican

Hissue, I popped in to

Real Foods on Broughton

Street to find some tasty

ingredients to fit the theme.

A common misconception is

that Mexican food is

unimaginative and

unhealthy – typically confused with Tex-Mex

dishes made on autopilot with help from a pack

of Old El Predictable, mountains of meat and


With an ancient heritage, Mexico’s cuisine is a

melting pot born of Mayan, Aztec, post-

Colonial and American influence, with rice and

beans for the basis of many dishes. Real Foods,

with their unique larder featuring mostly

organic foods, is a great place to source some

healthy ingredients.

In store you’ll find dried and tinned black-eyed,

pinto and kidney beans. These can make a

substantial stew, slow-cooked with onions, fresh

tomatoes, sweetcorn (try Suma’s organic tinned

corn), and of course chillies! Real Foods have

plenty of fiery contenders, including Chilli

Pepper Pete’s smokey chipotles. You could even

try making your own homemade soft tortillas

with maize meal flour, water and salt.

Surprisingly, considering the climate, soups are

popular in Mexican cuisine, packed with fresh

veggies, beans and squashes, all of which Real

Foods stock according to what’s in season. If

meat is added, it’s usually chicken, and the

flavours are finished off with lime juice.

Mexico’s most popular export has to be

guacamole. Recipes vary, but the most

important ingredient is

freshness. I like it quite piquant,

mixing creamy avocados (Real

Foods have organic Fuerte and

Hass varieties), with chopped

onions, garlic, chilles, a whole

load of coriander and lime juice.

Pico de gallo is a zingy, fresh

salsa with similar ingredients,

but using tomatoes instead of avocados. Try

these dips piled onto RW Garcia blue ground

corn chips – delicioso!

Let’s not forget sweet stuff, as we have Mexico

to thank for chocolate. Traditionally blended as

a spicy drink, it also appears in savoury dishes

and desserts, as does honey. Unfamiliar to many,

the agave plant (think a giant version of aloe

vera) as well as being the basis for tequila, is

also harvested for its nectar. It’s a particularly

good sweetener for drinks, as it dissolves

instantly, and is suitable for vegans. Real Foods

stocks several varieties, including a darker,

fuller-flavoured version.

For more Mexican cooking ideas, check out . Hasta luego!

Leila Arfa is the voice behind

Real Foods

– 37 Broughton Street, Edinburgh, EH1 3JU

–8 Brougham Street, Edinburgh, EH3 9JH

For opening times (they vary at each locale)

and more info, go to

10% Early Bird Discount Available to

December 2011. Mon-Fri 8am-10am, Sat

9am-10am, Sat 9am-10am, Sun 10am-11am.


BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:22 Page 26



Donald Mavor of Tex Mex II investigates

hillies have been cultivated in

Central and South America since

C4000 B.C. The Mexicans believe

that chillies have magical powers and

they’re right. They contain large amounts

of vitamin C, are antibacterial, pain killers

and are thought to help weight loss, help

cure ulcers, release serotonin and inhibit

the growth of some viruses.

Seeds were brought back to Europe by

Columbus in 1493 and the Portuguese

introduced them to India. They range in

heat from what the Americans call bell

peppers and we just call peppers to

jalapeños and on to habaneros chillies. All

are varieties of the same plant and can

cross-pollinate; this can lead to some fun

if you are growing peppers and your next

neighbour is growing chillies. They can

end up with sweet chillies and your

peppers can be hot as hell. This is why

Tabasco grow their famous chillies on an


The heat of peppers is measured in

‘scovilles’ (s); a pepper is 0s, New Mexico

green chillies about 1,500s, jalapeños

3,000-6,000s, and habaneros, 300,000s.

The record for the hottest chilli pepper is

naga jolokia, measuring over 1,000,000s,

interestingly registered by the Indian

defence research lab in 2000.

But most of all we love them in our food

in all their shapes and sizes – puréed,

dried, smoked, pickled and salted – they

brighten up our lives.

Dead Simple Recipe for Stuffed


1. Take 6 bullet chillies and make an incision

down their length, then make a half-cut

just below the stem (you should have a T-

shaped cut in your chilli now).

2. Gently open up the cut and with a small

teaspoon remove the seeds.

3. Stuff the void with a cheese, traditionally a

cheddar type.

4. Make a simple batter mixing flour and soda

water til it is like very thick cream (don't

worry about lumps, they add crispness).

5. Dip your chillies in the batter and fry ‘til

crisp. Serve with salad and sour cream.

Donald Mavor owns, cooks at and creates his

famous hot sauces at Tex Mex, Edinburgh

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:22 Page 27

Off the Trolley: Mexican chocolate

For most of us, Mexican

food means fajitas,

cerveza and salsa. But

aside from the standard Tex-

Mex fare, Mexico is the

birthplace of my favourite

food: chocolate.

Chocolate originated in

South America, at least 3000

years ago. It was brought to

Europe via the Spanish, after

their conquest of the Aztecs.

But this ‘chocolate’ was not in

lovely foil-wrapped bars.

Rather, the Aztecs and

Mayans had mixed cocoa beans with spices

and created a bitter, sometimes fermented

drink. It had ceremonial but also everyday

purposes, which ranged from a stimulant to a

digestive cure.

Chocolate was a big hit with the Spanish,

who brought it back to Europe and the

courtiers. It came to these shores in 1657,

when the first chocolate seller opened in

London. It was expensive, but very popular.

Samuel Pepys mentions it in his diary several

times, including his use of it as a cure for his

upset stomach (I use that excuse all the

time!). It remained a drink until 1847 when

Joseph Fry and Son created the first

chocolate ‘bar’, mixing cocoa butter and

sugar into the processed cocoa.

Mexican chocolate is hard to find

in the UK. Even the wonderful

Lupe Pintos in Bruntsfield find it

impossible to stock. It is entirely

different to the European, Swiss

chocolate popular here. It has a

grainier texture, usually flavoured

with cinnamon and spices and

used for hot chocolate or baking.

The main brand is Ibarra, which

you can order online.

If you can't wait to try a taste of

Mexico there are a few

alternatives in town. The

Chocolate Tree in Bruntsfield (123

Bruntsfield Place EH10 4EQ) serves chocolate

and churros: a Spanish dish of thick hot

chocolate with a fresh donut-like dunker on

the side, popular in Mexico (£3). Across the

street at Coco (174 Bruntsfield Place EH10

4ER) try the Aztec hot chocolate: a rich

blend of cocoa flavoured with chilli,

cinnamon and vanilla (£10.20/250g). Harvey

Nichols stocks Willie’s Chocolate and cacao,

some of which is made from South

American cocoa beans: not Mexican, but

(geographically) close!

Sadly, at the time of writing I couldn't find a

single stockist of authentic Mexican

chocolate in Edinburgh, clearly a sign that it's

time to book that Mexican vacation!

(R. Edwards)


Chocolate originated in South America, at least 3000 years ago

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:22 Page 28


What’s in Season: Saucy!


ike the rest of the Editorial Biters, I’m

going Mexican! So dig out the

sombreros, fire up the barbecue and

get to mixing las margaritas!

I’m veering off the norm and not giving you

any measurements for ingredients; it’s all

about what you want the recipe to be, to

suit your taste, not mine. First, sort out the

kinda chillies you like; I’m partial to the

sweet, smoky, dried Ancho chillies from

Lupe Pintos, which I soak in warm water as

per instructions.

Dribble some oil in a saucepan and gently

fry onions and garlic until soft. Throw in the

chillies, cumin and cinnamon and cook for a

few seconds. Pop in the tomatoes and

gently simmer the whole lot until a pulp,

adding water if it’s a tad too thick. Add

oregano salt and sugar to taste and adjust

any of the spices to get the flavour you like.

For the sauce, add a couple of squares of

chocolate – it will add subtley to it, giving it

a beautiful glossy sheen with just a hint of

cocoa. This sauce also makes a fab marinade

but omit chocolate and cool completely

before adding meat, prawns or veg, leave for

a couple of hours, then grill over some really

hot coals on the BBQ.

I serve the sauce on burgers wrapped in soft

flour tortillas with the normal array of

Mexican suspects: guacamole, sour cream,

fresh tomato salsa (don’t buy it, make it –

chopped tomatoes, chopped onions, chilli

of your choice, squeeze of lime, chopped

coriander, salt and a pinch of sugar), grated

Monterrey Jack cheese. It really is a case of

Slip, Slap, Slop – slip a burger onto a wrap,

slap on some cheese, slop on dollops of

avocado, salsa and cream; fold wrap round

the burger, pour out the Margaritas, and get

ready to get messy, summer is here! (L.


Lea writes

and is @BakersBunny on Twitter

Sauce / Marinade

Dribble of oil

Spring onions, chopped


Cumin seeds, toasted and crushed


Oregano fresh or dried

Fresh tomatoes, chopped, skinned and


Chilli of choice, chopped fine

Pinch of salt and sugar

Dark chocolate (80% cocoa) optional

What else is in my basket

Crab, mackerel, sardines. Fennel, runner beans,

courgettes. Raspberries, peaches, apricots.

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 28/6/11 23:34 Page 29

Flaming Hot

Mexicano Offer

This Month


Mexican food for £20 for

Two at The Smokestack

The Smokestack is offering a 40% discount on

nachos to share plus 2 portions of chicken,

steak or vegetable fajitas. The £20 price tag is

a saving of 40% on the normal menu price.

Buy your voucher online at

The Smokestack, 53-55 Broughton Street,

EH1 3RJ – 0131 556 6032

Fresh Mex Burritos,

Quesadillas and Tacos

made-to-order with choice of

grilled marinated chicken,

steak, haggis, and slowcooked

pork. Vegetarian and

vegan options also available.

Fresh made guacamole and

choice of five salsas ranging

from Mild to Extra-Hot.

Los Cardos

281 Leith Walk

0131 555 6619

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:23 Page 30




Bengali and Indian Dining

Ignite – Cuisine based on traditional recipes

from Bangladesh and Northern India in a

sumptuous setting. Dining at Ignite is an

experience capable of rekindling your passion

for Indian food. Open 7 days for lunch and

dinner. 272 Morrison Street, Haymarket

– 0131 228 5666

Lancers Brasserie –A sumptuous dining

experience in Stockbridge offering awardwinning

Indian cuisine. Three dining rooms,

Lancers Mess, The Regiment Club & The

Officers Club, can cater for every desired

dining experience from an intimate dinner for

two, through to private dining and up to large

parties. Try the Chef's Selection from the A La

carte menu (£18.95) and the vegetarian and

non-vegetarian Thali (£22.95) and (£17.95)

respectively. Open for lunch and dinner.

5 Hamilton Place, Stockbridge, Edinburgh

EH3 5BA. Tel: 0131 332 3444 & 0131 332 9559.

Bistros and Brasseries

Bisque – Casual gourmet dining using locally

sourced food, served in a relaxed and

contemporary setting. The bright, airy brasserie

and sunny garden terrace are perfect for

breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner, not to

mention a glass of wine from the well thought

out list. Open all day, every day. 69 Bruntsfield

Place – Bookings: 0131 622 8163 or

Browns – Spacious brasserie-style restaurant

with trademark quality service and bustling

atmosphere. Choose throughout the day from

a freshly prepared menu or enjoy a snack or

pre-dinner cocktail in the bar. Bar open daily

9am-10.30pm Sun, until midnight Mon-Thu, 1am

Fri and Sat; restaurant noon to 11pm daily

(10.30pm Sun). 131-133 George St

– 0131 225 4442.

Elbow – Eat ... the freshest produce from

cakes to steaks. Drink ... grape to grain and

everything in-between. Enjoy ... the little things

that count. Open for breakfast at 11am. Live

music first Friday of every month. Pub Quiz

every Tuesday. Open mic every Sunday.

Upstairs space available for free hire.

133-135 East Claremont Street, Edinburgh –

0131 556 5662 –

e.s.i. – Englishman, Scotsman and an Irishman!

Watch the chefs in the open kitchen create

your meal with fresh, homemade produce.

Diverse beer list ranging from Timothy Taylors

Landlord of Yorkshire, to James Boags of

Tasmania, whilst the bottle of wine on your

table could be award winning. Expect value for

money, a comfortable environment and an

enjoyable experience. 46 Queen Charlotte

Street, Leith – 0131 555 3103 www.


Calistoga Central & Sideways Wines –

WINNERS of Speciality Restaurant of the Year.

Great food, great wine, wine sales, wine

tastings, whisky tastings all available at

Edinburgh’s Original Californian Restaurant

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:23 Page 31

now based exclusively at 70 Rose St. Lane

North, Edinburgh EH2 3DX – 0131 225 1233.


Rice Terraces – Recently opened, Rice

Terraces is the only Filipino restaurant in

Scotland. Filipino chefs create authentic home

made dishes accompanied by a large selection

of Philippine beers and drinks. Open Tue-Fri

5pm-11pm; Weekends 10am-11pm.

93 St. Leonards Street, Edinburgh EH8 9QY,

– 0131 629 9877 –

Fish and Seafood

The Ship on The Shore – Seafood

Restaurant and Bar. Sustainable Scottish

seafood served with simplicity and style

complemented by a carefully chosen and

extensive wine and champagne list. Try the

fruits de mer for two or the oysters, both with

champagne. The Ship also serves lobster,

smoked salmon, mussels, crab, monkfish, bass

and much more. Seasonal specialities include

game and meat dishes. Outside seating. Food

served Mon-Sun noon-10pm.

24-26 The Shore – 0131 555 0409.


Café Marlayne – An absolute winner! Both

branches of this Edinburgh favourite have a well

deserved reputation for serving consistently

first rate cuisine that is fresh, seasonal and

skilfully cooked. The homemade desserts are

‘to die for’. Open for lunch and dinner.

13 Antigua Street – 0131 558 8244 and

76 Thistle Street – 0131 226 2230.


La Garrigue – Regional French Cuisine and

Terroir Wines from the Languedoc/ Roussillon.

A restaurant where “Chef/ proprietor Jean

Michel Gauffre brings warm Languedoc to your

plate” (Pete Irvine in Scotland The Best). This

restaurant is simple and stylish with the

relaxed ambience of a French bistro and it is a

firm favourite with locals and tourists alike.

Winner of the Good Food Guide Readers’

Restaurant of the Year 2010 (Scotland). Also

Gordon Ramsay's Best French Restaurant 2010.

Open 7 days for lunch and dinner. 31 Jeffrey

Street – 0131 557 3032

and 14 Eyre Place

– 0131 558 1608

La P’tite Folie – Informal, bustling bistro

with mixed clientèle. Favourites include

moules frites, steak frites, beef bourguignon,

duck, etc. Extensive wine list. 2 course lunch

£9.50, noon-3pm. Dinner a la carte 6-11pm.

Closed Sundays. Large groups catered for, set

dinner available.

9 Randolph Place – 0131 225 8678

61 Frederick Street – 0131 225 7983


Britannia Spice – This award-winning gem

of the Edinburgh dining scene is often referred

to as the best Indian restaurant in the Capital.

In fact it won the ‘Best in Britain’ Award three

years running! The menu is vast – Indian,

Bangladeshi, Nepali, Thai dishes are served and

the prices are reasonable. Conveniently

located in Leith near the Royal Yacht Britannia,

Ocean Terminal shopping centre and the

Scottish Executive, Britannia Spice is served by

frequent buses from the City centre. Open

Mon-Sat 12 noon-2pm; 5pm-11.45pm,



BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:23 Page 32



Sun 5pm-11.45pm

150 Commercial Street, Ocean Drive, Leith,

EH6 6LB. 0131 555 2255.

Suruchi and Suruchi Too – Indian Cuisine

at its best. Innovative cuisine from the major

culinary regions of India bought to Edinburgh

and skillfully prepared by master chefs.

14a Nicolson Street and

121 Constitution Street – 0131 556 6583

and 0131 554 3268 respectively. &


Al Dente – Literally ‘on the tooth’ which is

typical of freshly cooked pasta and typical of

this authentic restaurant which serves ‘pure’

Italian food. The changing menu includes

dishes from Puglia to Tuscany and is

complemented by regionally themed nights

once a month. Food cooked with passion using

only the freshest, seasonal ingredients. Ideal

venues for corporate events private parties or

business lunches. Nominated for the Ethical

Good Food Awards 2009.

– 139 Easter Road, Edinburgh EH7 5QA

– 0131 652 1932 mob 07530516822

Kurdish and Middle Eastern

Hanam’s – Edinburgh’s only Kurdish & Middle

East restaurant proudly offers a wide variety of

authentic dishes served with complimentary

naan bread. Traditional costumes, music, decor

and speciality events throughout the year,

ensure the Hanam’s experience is really

something to shout about. Also Shisha Pipe

Balcony. Open 7 days from Midday-Late.

3 Johnston Terrace (nr the castle)

– 0131 225 1329 and online booking at


Los Cardos – Fresh Mex Burritos, Quesadillas

and Tacos made-to-order with choice of

grilled marinated chicken, steak, haggis, and

slow-cooked pork. Vegetarian and vegan

options also available. Fresh made guacamole

and choice of five salsas ranging from Mild to

Extra-Hot. 281. Leith Walk – 0131 555 6619



The Forth Floor Restaurant, Bar &

Brasserie – The best in contemporary eating

and drinking & un-paralleled views from the

Castle to the Firth of Forth. Executive Chef

Stuart Muir uses fresh seasonal Scottish

produce to create food of the finest quality by

matching modern flavours with classical

techniques. Fresh, sustainable seafood available

from the Seafood Bar whilst the Brasserie

offers round the clock eating. Brasserie: Mon-

Sat 10am-10pm, Sun 11am-5pm; Restaurant:

lunch – Mon-Fri 12 noon-3pm, Sat & Sun 12

noon-3.30pm, dinner, Tues-Sat 6pm-10pm.

Book on line at

– 30-34 St Andrew Square, Edinburgh,

EH2 2AD – 0131 524 8350

Hellers Kitchen – Hellers Kitchen, is a

bright, modern bistro in the heart of the

Southside. Chef Richard Heller cooks up a

storm in the kitchen – from American style

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:23 Page 33

pancakes to perfectly cooked steaks and daily

changing fresh fish dishes. For a quick bite, try

one of their special recipe stonebaked pizzas.

Their on-site bakery delivers the perfect midafternoon

pick-me-up of cupcakes, scones and

delicious desserts. Open all day from 8.30am

(Sat 9am & Sun 10am). 15 Salisbury Place

– 0131 667 4654,

A Room In The Town, A Room In

The West End, A Room In Leith

–A trio of well-loved Scottish bistros. The

emphasis is on quality, fresh, affordable

Scottish produce served in a relaxed and

friendly atmosphere. All are fully licensed with

BYOB option also. Leith has a stunning

waterside setting and incorporates the bar

'Teuchters'. The West End branch also has a

Teuchters and like The Town is within easy

walking distance of Princes Street.

18 Howe St – 0131 225 8204, The West End,

26 William St – 0131 226 1036, Leith, 1c Dock

Place - 0131 554 7427.

Stac Polly – One of Edinburgh’s original

restaurants for authentic Scottish food and

atmosphere; now in its 21st year. Tasteful,

traditional décor such as stonewalls, Anta

furnishings and thistles combine with

flickering candles, crisp linen and twinkling

glasses to give a truly Scottish experience.

Expect a menu of exciting interpretations of

modern and traditional cuisine. Private rooms

available and outdoor facilities in Dublin St.

Open 7 days.

29-33 Dublin St – 0131 556 2231

8-10 Grindlay St – 0131 229 5405

38 St Mary’s St – 0131 557 5754



Iggs and Barioja – Est. 1989, Iggs now

specialises in seafood. Lunch 2 courses £12.50,

pre-theatre available and dinner à la carte.

Barioja is a multiple award-winning restaurant

serving paella and tapas. Great for parties. All

overseen by the ever charismatic Iggy.

15/19 Jeffrey St – 0131 557 8184 (restaurant)

0131 557 3622 (bar).

Tex Mex

Tex Mex – Donald Mavor, head chef and

proprietor brings the heart of Mexico to your

table, emphasising traditional Mexican food

with an authentic menu. Try the flaming fajitas

and the potent Margaritas ‘the best in town’.

Good fun, tasty food and very affordable.

64 Thistle Street – 0131 260 9699


Thai Orchid – Award-winning authentic Thai

cuisine using the best locally sourced produce

and imported Thai spices.

3 course business lunch £7.95.

5a Johnston Terrace (top of the Royal mile)

– 0131 225 6633


Henderson’s Restaurant and Bistro –

Delicious, wholesome food, using the best and

freshest of ingredients, all at reasonable prices

from Scotland’s legendary vegetarian restaurant,

family run since 1962. Special diets and food

intolerances catered for. Mon-Wed 8am-10pm;



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Thu-Sat 8am-11pm; Sun Bistro open 12-8.30.

94 Hanover Street, Edinburgh EH2 1DR

– 0131 225 2131 and

23 Roseburn Terrace – 0131 337 4444

Bars and Bar Food

Advocate – Traditional Scottish Ale House

offering an extensive range of freshly prepared

food at great value everyday. 7 Hunter Square,


Albanach – Serving the best in Scottish

cuisine daily in both the restaurant and bar.

Over 250 Malt Whiskies on offer alongside an

extensive wine and ale list. 197 High Street,


Amicus Apple – Hardly a secret destination,

Kevin Spacey, the cast of Gossip Girl and top

premiership footballers have been clocked

enjoying an award-winning cocktail in recent

months. However, the food is the real find!

Whatever you fancy, leisurely lunches, languid

evenings or late nights, you are guaranteed a

great time. 17 Frederick Street, Edinburgh

– 0131 226 6055

Boda Bar –A bohemian, cheeky, wee boozer

with a subtle Swedish twist. It is a cosy bar

with a strike of craziness. If you are unlucky

you can get to hear Abba more than once per

night. But since we love Spotify - you can

always ask if you have any special requests.

Since the owners love their wine, they have

decided to have nice wines at a good price so -

try out the wine list. You can also try Idun's a

new Elderflower Cider or maybe an OP

Andersson Aquavit (only you have to sing

before you drink it). Or what about our Craft

Guerilla nights -every last Wednesday of the

month. Check web for full event details. Open

Mon-Fri 2pm-1am, Sat noon-1am, Sun 1pmmidnight.

229 Leith Walk – 0131 553 5900 Free Wifi.

BrewDog Bar – Enjoy a selection of the best

beers the world has to offer, in a laid back,

chilled out atmosphere. For more info see, or facebook on BrewDog

Bar Edinburgh. 143-145 Cowgate, Edinburgh,

EH1 1JS.

Cameo – Food served daily, 2 for 9.99 deal

Mon – Thurs. All live sport shown and an

extensive range of continental lagers on offer.

23 Commercial Street, Edinburgh.

The Canons’ Gait –A Real Ale/Gastro pub

in Edinburgh’s Old Town offering a selection of

Ales from Scottish micro breweries. This bar

has gained a reputation for it’s impressive bar

food. The menu includes traditional dishes

such as Crombies sausage and mash, fish ‘n’

chips, haggis etc, more ambitious daily specials

and outstanding desserts. All offer superb

value for money and always with the emphasis

on home made and seasonal produce. There is

also a large Cellar Bar available for free hire,

book early to avoid disappointment! Food

served: Mon-Sat noon-8pm. 232 Canongate,

High Street, Edinburgh, EH3 8DQ

– 0131 556 4481 –


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The Earl of Marchmont – The Earl a

bustling, community-based hub has a

contemporary interior with generous outside

seating and beautiful lighting. On offer is an

extensive all day menu served by a welcoming

service from all the staff. Enjoy chilled Sunday

afternoons or a night out with friends and

family. Visit and follow link

for the Earl. 22 Marchmont Crescent,

Edinburgh – 0131 662 1877.

The Espy – Esplanade Bar & Restaurant

overlooking Portobello beach known for its

wide range of menu options created with

quality produce and freshly prepared specials.

A new and comprehensive breakfast menu is

now being served from 9am to 1145am. Also

coffees & teas, delicious wines, cask ales, cold

beers, cocktails and freshly squeezed fruit

juices plus free wifi & live music too. Bright sea

views and cosy sofas, you can relax and watch

the world go by friends. 62-64 Bath Street,

Portobello, Edinburgh EH15 1HF

– 0131 669 0082

Forth Floor Bar – For the finest bespoke

cocktails, wines and draught beers head to this

swanky cocktail bar with curvy banquettes,

chilled music and stunning views. Open from

noon every day, Tues-Sat til midnight. Food

served noon-7pm.

Harvey Nichols, St Andrews Square

– 0131 524 8350.

Guilty Lily – Caught between the

decadence of 1940’s burlesque and the

comfort of your local watering hole, Guilty Lily

welcomes and seats you on some of the


squishiest sofas in Leith. An extensive menu

that includes, homemade specials prepared

daily, fresh ground coffee and scones, fabulous

live music, funky cocktails, fine beers and ales,

fruity wines, free wifi and a huge big smile. We

are a family friendly café/restaurant and are

licensed for children. Café by day, bar and

venue by night. After the success of the

Esplanade in Portobello, Amanda decided to

share the love with the good people of Leith.

284 Bonnington Rd, – 0131 554 5824.

Hampton Hotel – Extensive menu of

Scottish classic and modern favourites served

12-3 5-9pm daily. Dine in the restaurant or bar

and enjoy a 2 for 9.99 deal midweek. 14

Corstorphine Road, Edinburgh.

Joseph Pearce – A large airy bar at the top

of Leith Walk. You can eat from 11am-9pm

daily. The menu changes seasonally, but always

include meatballs! Daytime we are more like a

cafe with a popular kidscorner for all ‘latte

mothers’. Free WiFi. Night-time busy bar with a

relaxed, cool, friendly crowd. Check out web

for all our crazy events

Open Sun-Thu 11am-12pm and Fri-Sat 11am-1am.

23 Elm Row – 0131 556 4140.

Merlin Roadhouse – Recently refurbished

and with an extensive menu and very

competitive prices the Merlin is a must visit for

anyone on the southside of Edinburgh. 168

Morningside Road, Edinburgh.

Nobles – With this cafe bar and venue, the

Phoenix has risen from the flames. Since



BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:23 Page 36



reopening over a year ago this classic Victoriana

bar has very quickly established a top

reputation as a classy watering hole, fine eatery

and live music hub and continues to charm

critics and customers alike. Nobles has a warm,

inviting and contemporary feel whist

maintaining it's traditional, bold wood and stain

glass heritage. The menu is locally sourced and

expertly prepared to an exceptionally high

standard. Music also plays a large part in the

day to day life of Nobles so expect to see top

drawer, original live music from Tuesday

through to Sunday following food service. Real

ales, a fantastic wine list, high speed wi-fi, fresh

fair-trade coffee plus various organic loose leaf

teas complete the experience. Opening times

12pm-1am Monday to Friday & 11am-1am

Saturday & Sunday. Children & Dry well behaved

dogs are welcome. 44a Constitution Street,

Leith, Edinburgh EH66RS – – 0131 629 7215

Roseleaf Bar Café – A cosy wee bar cafe in

the heart ‘o’ Leith serving fresh juices, real ales,

homemade ginger beer, cracking coffee, loose

leaf teas & “Pot-Tails!”... cocktails in teapots! All

served up in Grannies finest bone china.

Wholesome brunchies, lunchies, din-dins &

munchies served from 10 till 10 everyday with

daily changing specials including Sunday roasts

& home baked cakes all made with luv! All

locally sourced, free range & organic where

possible cause it tastes really, really good! Free

WIFI, wheelchair & child friendly. Open from

10am-1am everyday. For bookings call

0131 476 5268 or email

23-24 Sandport Place, Leith

Sofi’s – is a chic, hip, upbeat and popular

little bar with many events, e.g Champagne

Sundays where champagne is offered at great

prices, film nights every Monday, Knitting on

Tuesdays and lots more. Our lighter snacks are

perfect with one of our many wines and we

also have a great new cocktail menu both

virgin and alcoholic. Mon-Fri 2pm-1am, Sat

noon-1am and Sun 1pm-midnight. 65

Henderson Street – 0131 555 7019 Free WiFi.

The Standard – Bar menu available all day

with a seasonal set menu changing daily.

Breakfasts available at weekends, Roasts

available every Sunday. Children welcome 'til

6pm. We also now have a new cocktail/wine

list available and excellent deals on spirits and

beers. Live sport shown in basement sports.

Function room available to hire. All this makes

this new town bar a must for foodies, locals,

sports fans and students. Sun-Thu 11am

midnight; Fri & Sat 11am-1am. Food served

noon-9pm. 24 Howe Street,

Edinburgh EH3 6TG – 0131 225 6490

Starbank – Traditional Ale House with 8

daily cask ales pouring, great range of

homecooked food served with daily specials

to ensure you never tire of eating at the

Starbank. 64 Laverockbank Road, Edinburgh.

The Street – Lively night-time hot spot with

an eclectic back bar, plus light bites and classic

pub grub served until 9pm daily, until midnight

on weekends. Check out ‘orange Wendy’s

Wednesday Pub Quiz’. DJ’s every Thurs, Fri &

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:24 Page 37

Sat. Open everyday from midday until 1am.

2 Picardy Place, EH1 3JT

– 0131 556 4272 –

Victoria – If Scandinavian style equals

minimalistic Victoria doesn’t fit. It is colourful,

radiant and full of life. The crowd is a cool,

friendly and open-minded and there are a lots

of events e.g. singles nights, Eurovision party,

Come Dine with Me and what ever else that

pops up in our silly minds. We serve a lot of

different drinks: Beers from 30 different

countries and 12 different gins. Open: Mon-Fri

2pm-1am, Sat noon-1am; Sun 1pm-midnight. Now

also children licensed from opening til 5pm.

265 Leith Walk – 0131 555 1638. Free WiFi.

The Waterline –A warm and inviting

Bar/Bistro with views over ‘The Water of Leith’.

Enjoy some of our fresh homemade food for

lunch, dinner or simply when you get the

nibbles as you relax by the cosy fire. Dine with

friends in our back restaurant area and choose

from our large selection of wine, spirits,

bottled beers & ales, or simply relax with a

coffee or fresh Suki Tea as you surf the free

WIFI. Food is now served 12 till late. Fun and

folk music with Skirlie every Wednesday from

9pm, and live music on Saturdays from 9pm or

come along on a Thursday night to join the

popular pub quiz! For more info contact Sonia

and The Team at 58 The Shore, Leith

– 0131 554 2425.

White Hart – Selection of Scottish

favourites served daily in the surroundings of

Edinburghs oldest bar. Trading since 1517 this is


one not to miss. 34 Grassmarket, Edinburgh.

The White Horse – on the Canongate has

recently been re-opened by the Ross Brothers

of The Earl of Marchmont. The bar is an

institution on the Royal Mile where it has been

serving thirsty locals and tourists alike in

several different guises since 1742. Come along

for a glass of wine, pint, meal or simply a

coffee and a slice of cake. Great bar menu

available. The White Horse is also a free fringe

venue in the private stable room to the rear of

the building throughout the festival. Opening

times: Mon-Thur 12 noon-11pm, Fri & Sat 12

noon-12 pm, Sun 12 noon-11pm. 232 Canongate,

EH8 8DQ – 0131 556 4481

World’s End – Famous Edinburgh pub

serving high quality pub food daily

complemented by a range of cask ales, whisky

and wine. 2-8 High Street, Edinburgh.


Always Sunday – A sunny, refreshing

experience in the heart of the Old Town.

Fairtrade coffee, pots of tea, breakfast, lunch,

wine and beer, all day deli dishes and fabulous

cakes and scones. 170 High Street - Mon-Fri

8am-6pm, Sat & Sun 9am-6pm.

Edinburgh Larder – A relaxed, bright and

welcoming environment with a delicious

selection of local, good quality food, using

organic / seasonal ingredients wherever

possible. Great coffee from Artisan roast,

fantastic teas from Eteaket, lovely home baking



BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:24 Page 38



and superb cakes. Fully licensed with tasty

local beer, wines from Friarwood and a

selection of Scottish spirits. Free WIFI,

wheelchair & child friendly. Open from 8am-

5pm Monday-Saturday and 9am-5pm Sunday.

15 Blackfriars Street EH1 1NB – 0131 5566 922


Deli Polonia – Offering the largest range of

Polish produce in Edinburgh. We have a variety

of fresh breads which are a combination of

sweet and sour dough (half wheat-half rye), the

biggest range of fresh Polish Sausages and a

wide range of Polish beers and much much

more... All nationalities very welcome. Opening

hours – Delicatessen: Mon-Fri 8am-7pm;

Sat 8am-6pm; Sun 9am-6pm – Café: Mon-Sat

8am-6pm; Sun 9am-6pm. Come in and enjoy a

coffee –

235-7 Leith Walk, Edinburgh – 0131 555 1281.

Real Foods – is at the forefront of natural,

organic and vegetarian food retailing and is the

largest Scottish retailer of Organic, Fair trade,

Vegetarian and Special Diet foods. Opened in

Edinburgh in 1975, Real Foods was also the

capital’s first natural food shop. With over 30

years of trading, the shops have become an

integral part of the local community and

provide first rate customer service. Visit them

at - 37 Broughton Street, Edinburgh, EH1 3JU

– 0131 557 1911 or 8 Brougham Street, Tollcross,

EH3 9JH – 0131 228 1201 – or order online

Food and Wine Club

Bite Club – The gourmet food and wine club

associated with this fine magazine! Exclusive

invitations to bespoke events, discounts at

restaurants and bars, free tastings and more!

For more info please email us at

Wine Stores

Henderson Wines – Independent wine

merchant. Extensive range of wines, champagnes,

beers & spirits. Wines range from pick ’n’ mix for

£10 to bottles of £130. Collectable spirits also.

Home delivery. 109 Comiston Rd – 0131 447

8580 and new shop now open at 23 Roseburn

Terrace – 0131 337 4444.

Sideways Wine Store – Californian wine

specialist. Over 150 wines and beers available.

Free delivery in Edinburgh area. Buy direct from

70 Rose St. Lane North, Edinburgh EH2 3DX –

0131 225 1233.

WoodWinters Wines & Whiskies –

Drinking wine is about pleasure and should be

fun whether you’re buying party wine sub £5 or

you’re a canny claret collector. Our shop

is…small; compact and bijou. We treat our

customers like wine-loving friends; pointing

them in the right direction and getting to know

what they like. And, when we know what you

like, we can deliver more of it! Regular tastings

and a wide range of organic and bio-dynamic

wines from small vineyards around the world.

91 Newington Rd, Edinburgh, EH9 1QW

– 0131 667 2760

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:24 Page 39


Well-established and well-loved salon with a

team of freindly stylists who are passionate

about hair. Specialists in hair-cutting, colour,

extensions, make-up and wedding hair. Friendly,

relaxed ambience.

37 Leith St Edinburgh EH1 3AT

0131 556 9999

Using professional and engaging

video, Flixity is the dynamic way

to promote your business online.

Visitors who view video online are 85%

more likely to buy

(Internet Retailer, April 2010)

For further information on how

to get a video made for your

business please email

Your video can be seen by thousands on

The List,, Flixity,

social networks and of course

BiteJuly2011v2:Layout 1 27/6/11 21:24 Page 40

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