What seems like ages ago now, in January I had a very busy week, where I went to Edinburgh for a few days with work and to Chester for the weekend with Stuart. While I was at both places, I sampled some delicious food at a couple of local restaurants that I would like to share with you today. Apologies for the lack of photos in this post, Edinburgh was a work thing so I could not really take pictures and in Chester, I was just too hungry to take pictures before eating!!
On my only night out in Edinburgh (the rest of the time I was at a conference), I was very lucky to be taken to Howies Restaurant by my friend Viv, who lives in Edinburgh. We went to the Victoria Street branch and it was excellent. Good service, very knowledgeable waitresses and fantastic food. I started with Scottish haggis with confit turnip, potato crisps & a redcurrant reduction and for my main, I had Scottish borders ribeye steak with hand cut chips, roast tomato and a rich onion & thyme Lyonnaise jus. Both formed part of their offer of a 2 course dinner with a drink for £15 deal. The haggis was yummy and I could have eaten a massive pile of it, as it was that good. It was full of flavour and the redcurrant reduction complimented it perfectly. The steak was fabulous as well, perfectly cooked and the chips were amazing. I love proper homemade chips and the rich onion and thyme jus complimented it beautifully. For Pudding, I had home made apple & rhubarb crumble with Mackie’s dairy ice cream, which was good but had slightly too much crumble topping in relation to the fruit for me. It was still yummy though. All three courses were washed down with an excellent glass or two of their house red wine. Many thanks to Viv for taking me to Howies. I intend to visit it again, when I am next in Edinburgh.
The second place I visited in Edinburgh was The Edinburgh Larder. This is a café/deli located on Blackfriars Street. I decided to go there for brunch on my last morning in Edinburgh before I got the train home as the breakfast at my hotel (a Travelodge) wasn’t up to much. I had homemade beans on homemade toast, which was very yummy and very delicious. It was served with a big glass of fresh orange juice and a proper cup of coffee. I absolutely loved it and have decided I am always eating my breakfast/brunch their whenever I am in Edinburgh. The deli counter was superb too with homemade cakes and cookies and an excellent range of cheeses of meats. I brought some venison chorizo that I intend to try soon in a stew of some kind. I brought a couple of biscuits as well, that I ate on train home. They were very yummy!
In Chester, we went to the Blackhouse Grill and we went to our first ever Michelin starred restaurant, Simon Radley at the Chester Grosvenor. You will have to wait until the next post for me to tell you about the Simon Radley restaurant as I think it deserves a post of its very own.
The Blackhouse Grill is part of a chain that mostly has branches in Northern locations but it also has one in Smithfield in London. The one in Chester is on Newgate Street and it has such a large menu, I challenge you not to find something you don’t like. It has fish, salads, steaks, Mexican and Chinese specialities. It even serves the ‘wagyu’ Kobe beef. To start, Stuart and I had a warm baked loaf with balsamic vinegar and olive oil. For our main, we shared a Chateaubriand steak with homemade chips, garlic French beans and béarnaise sauce. It was fantastic. The steak was perfectly cooked medium rare, the French beans were full of flavour and the béarnaise sauce was so good, we had double helpings. For pudding, Stuart had a lovely and sharp lemon sorbet and I had a 10 year old tawny port which was beautiful as I was too full for anything else. The staff were very attentive and there was a great buzz about the place with a great atmosphere and live music. They also gave us 50% off our food bill with an offer that we did not know about, which made the whole evening even better.
That’s it for today, until next time,
Happy Cooking! 🙂