Bangkok Dirty Fries - Miss Woo's

Miss Woo’s

14th June 2018 6.20pm

www.misswoosbars.co.uk

We decided to visit Miss Woo’s in Leith without booking, but even early Thursday evening meant we couldn’t get a standard table and had to perch to eat along a bar ledge. I’m not sure if it’s just because they have an itison voucher at the moment (which we didn’t have) or its just popular anyway. Either way, book in advance just in case.

The menu is relatively simple, breaking down into fries, gyoza, bao buns, wings, ramen, pad thai and sides. Even though we didn’t have the voucher deal, Miss Woo’s has a very reasonable deal of one cocktail plus 3 items from a highlighted selection on the menu for £18, which we decided to try. I chose a Miss Woo Woo cocktail and then pork gyoza, Asian bbq chicken wings and spicy Korean pulled pork bao buns. My friend chose the same wings and buns but opted for the Bangkok dirty fries instead of gyoza.

The food came out pretty much at the same time. The Bangkok dirty fries had pulled pork and chillis slathered over the top of the fries. These were really substantial and enjoyable. The bao buns were beautifully soft, although it was a little annoying that they stuck to the cardboard container there were served in. The hot and sour flavours were great.

The pork dumplings were served in a bamboo steamer basket and were cooked well, with a decent amount of filling. Dipping them into soy was lovely. However, my favourite was the Asian bbq wings. The portion was generous, with each wing having a good amount of meat on it. The glaze was sweet and smoky in equal measure. I could eaten three servings of that!

We did originally get charged with the full price rather than the deal price but this was quickly fixed. We enjoyed our trip to Miss Woo’s and will definitely head back to try more of the menu.

Food – 8/10
Service – 8/10
Atmosphere- 8/10
Value – 9/10

Overall – 33/40

Would I eat here again? Oh yes!

£36 for two of the special offer cocktail and three eligible dishes

Crolla’s

Crolla’s Gelateria

15th April 2018 3pm

www.crollasgelateria.com

A friend and I took a stroll along the Water of Leith one sunny Sunday and ended up Crolla’s for an ice cream. Situated at the Shore, we sat at the window with a view of the water whilst absorbing the 50’s diner feel inside. We had originally gone in for a small ice cream but easily got swayed both by the serving area and the menu and ordered a cold stone ice cream and a sundae as well as a couple of drinks. They also serve savoury food should you have company with you who does not like ice cream (and frankly, you might need to question your friend choices!).

Chocolate Minty Madness - Crolla’s

Chocolate Minty Madness – Crolla’s

So I mentioned I had a cold stone ice cream. This is where you choose your ice creams and inclusions and get it all mashed together on a cold marble stone to make a brand new ice cream. Top it with sauce and away you go. For those of you less creative, like me, there are some suggestions of creations. I chose the chocolate minty madness. On delivery to our table, I was a bit shocked by the lurid green sauce splashed across it but it actually tasted ok. The ice cream itself was lovely and the chocolate buttons mashed through were yummy. Across the table from me, I did have a bit of food envy with the sundae. The lovely shell shaped glass held lots of ice cream, sauce and cream to scoop your way through.

Hot chocolate fudge sundae - Crolla’s

Hot chocolate fudge sundae – Crolla’s

They do my beloved cookie dough creations here, so I will definitely have to pop back for another visit, even if it’s not sunny.

Cold Stone ice cream mixing - Crolla’s

Cold Stone ice cream mixing – Crolla’s

Food – 8/10
Service – 8/10
Atmosphere – 7/10
Value – 8/10

Overall – 31/40

Would I eat here again? Yup

Cost £16 for two ice cream dishes and two diet cokes

Chicken Balti - Vinyasa

Vinyasa

10th April 2018 6.30pm

www.vinyasaedinburgh.co.uk

Midweek curry on a grim drizzly day is a definite pick-me-up. Vinyasa can be found just off the Royal Mile and we were warmly welcomed on arrival. We immediately got to drooling over the menu, with plenty of familiar dishes on the menu. We had to wait a little while to place our order but when we did, we decided to get a load of poppadoms to start (standard) and then picked a variety of curries. I chose the chicken balti, as I always do when I spot it on a menu of a place I’ve not been before as it’s a good yardstick for me. I also ordered a garlic naan to scoop up the curry sauce.

Curries - Vinyasa

Curries – Vinyasa

The poppadoms and chutneys were great and as usual, we all had to restrain ourselves from devouring them within seconds. The chutney tray was pretty standard but as usual, the mango chutney was the one that was demolished.

Chicken Balti - Vinyasa

Chicken Balti – Vinyasa

Next, the curries. On delivery to the table, you may feel they appear on the small side, appearing in small but deep dishes, but actually I found this meant that I could completely finish my curry rather than having to admit defeat three quarters of the way through. Also, it meant there was a greater meat and vegetables to sauce ratio, which was mightily satisfying. I think everyone around the table enjoyed their curries. The rice and naans were also delicious.

Naan - Vinyasa

Naan – Vinyasa

We had to wait again to get and pay the bill but we felt it was worth it for the quality of the food. A nice place if you are around the Royal Mile vicinity.

Food – 8/10
Service – 7.5/10
Atmosphere – 8/10
Value – 8/10

Overall – 31.5/40

Would I eat here again? Probably

Cost £131 for 12 poppadoms and chutney, 6 curries, 4 naans, 3 rice, a bottle of wine, a beer, two diet cokes

The Panty - Colinton

Hungry Herbivore at The Pantry (Colinton) – Mini Review

30th March 2018 7.30pm

www.thepantryedinburgh.co.uk

As regular readers of this blog will know, I am friends with Emma from Vegan Edinburgh and Ann from A Quirky Lifestyle. Emma had been invited along to the Hungry Herbivore supper club at The Pantry, so Ann and I thought we’d get ourselves tickets and keep her company. The Pantry have a number of venues across the capital now, but this supper club was at the Colinton branch, which is a beautiful building both inside and out. All the diners were sat communally around two long tables and the set menu for the evening was on each place setting, studded with a sprig of rosemary. I did look a bit odd sniffing my menu but I didn’t care.

The manager introduced us to the evening, which was vegetarian (with vegan adaptions already built into the menu). Almost all the paired wines were vegan too – and when they weren’t, a vegan wine was still provided as an alternative. We started the evening with some appetisers, which consisted of a trio of dips. There was beetroot hummus; chickpea, pumpkin and cumin; and butter bean and spinach. They were served on small pieces of seeded bread which were made in-house. As you can imagine, these had great colour and tasted yummy, but could have possibly done with a touch more seasoning.

Appetisers - The Pantry

Appetisers – The Pantry

The next course was creamy wild mushrooms with garlic and parsley, served on sourdough toast with a runny duck egg. The egg was not served on the vegan dish. This was a lush dish with the egg oozing beautifully over the mushrooms. The mushrooms managed to still feel substantial and carried a wonderful flavour as well as texture. Top notch.

Mushrooms on Toast - The Pantry

Mushrooms on Toast – The Pantry

We then moved onto the herby gnocchi as our main. This was probably my favourite of the courses. The gnocchi came with pesto, grilled courgettes, peas, pine nuts, pea shoots, fridge and radish. It was a truly spring dish and danced in my mouth with flavours. Again, I’d have liked a little more seasoning but it’s a minor quibble. The vegan offering had different pasta but otherwise had pretty much the same elements.

Dessert came in the form of a lemon and blueberry fool. This consisted of lemon curd, meringue, blueberry compote and whipped cream. This was a refreshing palate of flavours and finished the meal off nicely. Emma had a lovely hunk of orange cake, which she kindly let me try. It was light and zingy. She was exceedingly happy with her dessert.

We had fun at this evening and they are holding different themes at each supper club, so it’s worthwhile checking out their website for something that might take your fancy.

Cost £39 per person or £59 for two, including wine.

A cod and a prawn taco - Bodega

Bodega (Tollcross)

28th March 2018 6pm

www.ilovebodega.com

I’ve had Bodega recommended to me a couple of times and decided to give their Tollcross branch a whirl. With plenty of Mexican places popping up in the city, I wondered whether it would hold its own.

Margarita - Bodega

Margarita – Bodega

A smallish venue, we were warmly greeted and grabbed a table by the window. The menu is short but still manages to give you plenty of choice. Our friendly server recommended that we should have two different flavoured tacos each (each filling comes in two tacos) and then any starters and sides we fancied. We decided to go for one starter between us – the warm black bean and melted cheese dip – and then chose four tacos. We selected the carne asada steak, Vietnamese pork, tempura tiger prawns and baja cod bites. We also ordered the scallion fries as a side. We decided to get a couple of the incredible value margaritas at £5 a pop too.

Warm black bean and melted cheese dip - Bodega

Warm black bean and melted cheese dip – Bodega

A mildly spicy dip was brought to the table and shortly after the black bean dip followed with a generous bowl of tortilla chips. If you ignore the fact that black beans have a habit of getting stuck around your teeth, this was an excellent starter. The dip had a lovely depth and the cheese was harmonious with it. We scooped our way through this pretty quickly but it is a lot for one person so sharing is recommended unless you are really hungry.

Scallion Fries - Bodega

Scallion Fries – Bodega

Whilst we were waiting for the tacos, the scallion fries came out. Personally, these were the highlight of the meal. Long pieces of spring onion were lightly battered and came with a mustard dip. These were so moreish I could have eaten several bowls of them. I would also visit again just to eat these.

A cod and a prawn taco - Bodega

A cod and a prawn taco – Bodega

The tacos came out and we mixed and matched so the pair of us had one taco of each of the four fillings we had chosen. Each taco brought something different to the palate. My favourite was the carne asada steak taco. It was weighty and full of flavour The chipotle dressing and soured cream pulled it all together nicely. My friend chose the tiger prawn taco as her favourite. The prawns came with a slaw and a sesame-chilli dressing.

Whilst we were totally full already, we could not resist to allure of churros. So we ordered some to share between us. My friend used to live in Spain for a while, so has high standards when it comes to churros. These got the thumbs up, particularly praising the thickness of the accompanying chocolate sauce. I thought they were lush and easily scoffed my share. Goodness knows where I managed to put it though!

Churros - Bodega

Churros – Bodega

We had a great time at Bodega. The staff were friendly, the food was delicious and we are already planning to go back again.

Food – 9/10
Service – 8/10
Atmosphere – 9/10
Value – 8/10

Overall – 34/40

Would I eat here again? Yes, frequently

Cost £63 for one starter, four taco plates, one side, one dessert, three margaritas and a glass of wine

Vouno - Taxidi

Taxidi

14th March 2018 6pm

www.facebook.com/Taxidi-107882179904212

We had been recommended Taxidi from a colleague whose husband is Greek, so we took this as a serious endorsement. Situated on Brougham Place, Taxidi is a small, cosy and inviting venue. The menu is varied and has salads, classics and sharing plates. We decided to be brave and attempt the vouno mixed grill which is for 2-3 people. Our server double checked that we were sure, as it was a lot of food, but we gallantly continued with our order. We also ordered some tzatziki on the side to help it all slide down.

Vouno - Taxidi

Vouno – Taxidi

As the food came out, it became apparent that they weren’t wrong about the side of the mixed grill. It was so large that it came on its own little table-top table. Piled onto it were 2 souvlaki, 2 pork belly pieces, 2 sausages, 2 chicken thighs, 4 mpifteki, slaw and copious amounts of pitta and chips. All the meat had wonderful flavour and nothing was overcooked. The chicken, in particular, was very moist. The pitta bread was light in texture and the chips has some beautiful seasoning on them that really made them taste that little bit special. The slaw was not swimming in creamy sauce which was good. We used the tzatziki to provide that element. Whilst we were happily munching away, a couple of women on a table by the window had managed to set their menu on fire (how on earth they managed this I will never know) and seemed to be fanning the flames rather than actually putting it out. Luckily staff came to the rescue and put the fire out. After all that commotion, our server was apologetic for the disturbance but impressed to see we had demolished the mixed grill, even if we had left a few chips and pitta pieces behind. He offered to have that bagged up to take home but we felt it wouldn’t travel well so declined.

Orange Cake - Taxidi

Orange Cake – Taxidi

We were stuffed but my friend insisted on getting a slice of the orange cake for dessert, which she then made me help her eat. It wasn’t quite what she was expecting, with a slightly jelly like consistency on the outside but the centre of the cake was much better (apologies for the photo of the half eaten cake). Unsurprisingly though, we couldn’t finish the cake but my friend did take up the opportunity to bag it and take it home.

Taxidi is a nice little find and certainly worth investigating if you are wanting some Greek cuisine.

Food – 8/10
Service – 8/10
Atmosphere – 8/10
Value – 8/10

Overall – 32/40

Would I eat here again? Yup.

Cost £47 for tzatziki, vouno slice of orange cake and a glass of wine

Deep fried shredded beef in chilli - Golden Dragon

The Golden Dragon Restaurant

20th January 2018 7.45pm

www.thegoldendragonrestaurant.co.uk

A friend and I had taken a trip up to Edinburgh Zoo to see the Giant Lanterns of China and it subconsciously got us in the mood for Chinese food. We headed back into town and had originally intended to visit Rendezvous but it was closed for a break, so we wandered along to The Golden Dragon Restaurant. It’s one of those places in a central location but so easily overlooked. Inside, the Golden Dragon is an old style Chinese restaurant – so nothing flash but focussing on great food and warm hospitality.

The Golden Dragon Restaurant

We settled down to look at the menu and I was delighted to spy char siu dumplings, so opted for that immediately. I added some deep fried shredded beef and my friend chose salt and pepper prawns to start and chicken satay for main. We decided to share mains so also got some egg fried rice between us. After ordering my friend spotted a sign on the wall saying their customers rated the shredded beef the best in Edinburgh. A bold claim that we could test them on. But first, the starters.

My char siu dumplings came as a pair and were white and fluffy on the outside and full of tasty pork on the inside. Not too spicy, these buns are quite filling but so satisfying. Across from me, the prawns sat on top of a bed of salad. They were coated in batter and chillis were scattered across the dish. My friend heartily enjoyed this starter, finding the prawns of good quality and size and the flavour was hitting the spot.

The mains came along not long after and smelt divine. They say you eat with your eyes, but your nose also plays a part and it was telling me to hurry up and get stuck into the delicious smelling food. The deep fried shredded beef was quite subtle in its appearance, unlike other places where it’s been day-glo orange. The beef was crispy rather than chewy and the coating didn’t hide the beef. The sauce itself was full of depth and complexity that surprised me. Spring onions gave a nice contrast too. I have to say, it is definitely the best deep fried shredded beef that I have had in Edinburgh, and possibly ever. The satay was also ticking all the flavour boxes. The chicken was moist and the vegetables not over cooked. The satay sauce itself was not too thick and had a gorgeous nutty tasty. The egg fried rice worked well between the two of us and mopped up those sauces well.

This was a wonderful find and somewhere central that gave a satisfying meal. We really enjoyed the food.

Food – 9.10
Service – 9/10
Atmosphere – 7/10
Value – 8/10

Overall – 33/40

Would I eat here again? Yes.

Cost £50 for two starters, two mains, one rice and four coke zeros.