Monday, 17 June 2013


Apologies for not writing for a while now! I went into hibernation after overeating and have only just digested enough to start writing again! This week I was up in Edinburgh and due to my culinary interests, as well as general laziness,  I sampled what the North has on offer. I can assure you that it is not worth skipping!

Nile Valley ("The African Place") 

This little cafe is just opposite the UK's third ugliest building, Appleton Tower, but I can assure you that the food does not mirror this! My flatmates had been going on about this place all year, but I never got the chance to try it. So this time I was determined to attack it, and was I in for a treat! It is run by an African couple who have beautifully decorated the walls with African art and maps. The food is simple but so delicious. I had a wrap with chicken, feta, hummus, aubergines and salad. Very, very nice, but I forgot to add the hot sauce which I definitely recommend! I have to admit though next time I would add the falafels to this mix. I tried my boyfriend's wrap and I got food jealousy. The falafels here are hands down the best I have had in a long time! The price is fair at about £4 a meal, which is not bad at all in the centre of Edinburgh! If you get the chance to go up this is a must try!!!

6 Chapel St  Edinburgh, Midlothian EH8 9AY
0131 667 8200

L'escargot Bleu
I had read about this restaurant a lot before finally getting to sample the food! Lucky for me my father came up to visit me in Edinburgh, meaning I got a good meal out of it! Located in Edinburgh's New Town, I was really excited to try this place. It has beautiful rustic decor and very friendly and attentive staff. If you go for lunch (like we did) you can pay reasonable prices of about £12.95 for 2 courses, and it is definitely worth it! The food is beautifully cooked and I enjoyed every morsel of it. For starter I had steamed mussels and seafood salad, and for main a pearl barley risotto with summer vegetables and comtĂ© cheese. All I could think is where was my Frenchy Flatmate! I melted away in the cheese delight of deliciousness. I can imagine this restaurant to be very atmospheric at dinner, so if you get the chance to try I definitely would!

56 Broughton Street
EH1 3SA Edinburgh

The Grain Store

This next place is one of my favourite restaurants in Edinburgh. It is situated in the Grassmarket, which is always buzzing with life! All that is visible from the street is a little door and it does not look like much when you stand outside. Upon entering it just looks like the staircase at school, but the magic is uncovered as soon as the door at the top of the stairs is opened. If you are after atmosphere and good food then this is the place to try! It has a beautiful wooden interior, similar to the Witchery, but a much more casual atmosphere that is not 'in your face'. The nice thing about this place is the tables are nicely spread so you feel like you are there by yourself. From friendly staff to fantastic food you can't go wrong. Pictured to the right is a mushroom, chestnut, hazelnut and leek ballotine with pasta. I admit I was not hungry when I came to the restaurant, but after eating this delight all I wanted to do was feast for the whole night. Absolutely gorgeous! It is a bit on the pricey side, so it's not an everyday dining facility, but great for a special occasion or any serious foodies!

30 Victoria St (1st Floor) 

Edinburgh, Scotland 

La Garrigue

This place has been recommended as one of Gordon Ramsay's favourite restaurants, in fact, top in Scotland. So I was very excited to get to try this place out! It is a French restaurant, but no matter what your food tastes are they have a delightful menu that can suit anyones tastes! It is situated opposite Edinburgh's picturesque Carlton Hill, a couple of minutes from Waverley Station. The decor is just what you want from a restaurant. It feels as if you are somewhere in the heart of Europe, with French waiters, rustic design and a real family feel. It is a real gem! The food is simple, but fantastic. You could not ask for much more. One thing I would caution is that if you are not vegetarian I would definitely recommend choosing one of the meat dishes. My boyfriend had the duck, which was to die for - perfectly cooked, tender with crispy skin! I got food jealousy, again! I had ordered the catch of the day - monkfish, but I was not as impressed by it as I was by the meat. I'm sure this is not true of all the seafood dishes, but from what I saw, the meat was definitely their forté!

31 Jeffrey Street
Urban Angel

As it was my last day in Edinburgh today, I could not be bothered to make breakfast! So we went on a hunt for a good brunch in Edinburgh's New Town. Located on Hanover Street, Urban Angel is a must try! It is on the expensive side, costing about £10 pp for breakfast, so be warned! But, if you want to treat yourself this is a great place! I have never seen such beautiful eggs benedict and perfectly poached eggs! They offer a variety of egg dishes, oatmeal, smoothies and juices, salads and lots more! If you ar trying to get healthy this summer, this is a great place to start, they have lots of great smoothies and salads that may inspire you! I took note of the raw chocolate smoothie (that was soooooo good! - meaning a lot coming from a chocaholic!) and is definitely something I want to make at home and experiment with! Just for reference, they made it with cacao, agave syrup, banana and vanilla. So simple, so delicious and so nutritious! But it was the eggs that stole the show! I have included a number of photos, because I think they deserve the appreciation. If you are looking for somewhere low key, friendly and yummy, this is a must try!

121 Hanover St  Edinburgh, Midlothian EH2 1DJ
0131 225 6215

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