This article is written by our guest blogger Olivia Gagan.
Those looking for some of the best cooking that Caledonia has to offer need look no further than Edinburgh. Auld Reekie, as its affectionately known by locals, is one of the UK’s most elegant and cosmopolitan cities, home to a whole host of attractions, from the world-famous Edinburgh Festival in the summer to Hogmany in the midst of winter.
Scotland’s capital is studded with Michelin stars, five in total. Number one on any self-respecting foodie’s list should be… Number One. The restaurant is nestled within the glamourous Balmoral Hotel, and executive chef (yes, there is now a job title above ‘head chef’) Jeff Bland offers the best in beautifully prepared local Scottish fare, such as Borders vension with braised lentils.
If you’re not too full after your chocolate chiboust dessert, then Edinburgh Castle is just a short stroll away. Number One also features in crime writer Ian Rankin’s novels as a haunt of Detective Inspector John Rebus, so you’ll be in great company.
Another good bet is Restaurant 21212, Michelin-starred chef Paul Kitching’s £4.5M restaurant. The elegant townhouse plays host to a modern French menu that won Best New Restaurant in the UK in 2009 at the National Restaurant Awards. Meat dishes like pulsating lamb with smoked bacon crisps and young roe deer fillet with Toulouse sausage should satisfy the most bloodthirsty of carnivores.
The Plumed Horse
The Plumed Horse in up-and-coming trendy district of Leith has managed to keep its Michelin star for a decade but hasn’t lost its sense of humour, hosting a ‘retro night’ in April (you’ve guessed it…80’s-tastic prawn cocktails, black forest gateaux and haggis made a temporary appearance on the menu.)
And if fish is your thing, be sure to visit The Kitchin. Smoked eel from Loch Lomond, razor clams from Arisaig and hand-dived Orkney scallops are just a some of the Scottish seafood dishes infused with head chef Tom Kitchin’s French-influenced cooking techniques.
Restaurant Martin Wishart
The final jewel in Edinburgh’s Michelin crown is Restaurant Martin Wishart, run by the eponymous chef. If his mushroom bouillon with yellow corn mousseline leaves you envious of his cooking skills, then he also runs a cookery school next door, where you can hone your culinary skills under the watchful eye of some of Scotland’s best chefs.
So there you have it…Edinburgh’s finest restaurants, which will keep the most hardcore of foodies happy. Question is, with such an enticing array of choices, which one will you choose?
View Michelin Starred restaurants in Edinburgh in a larger map