Tag Archives: restaurant

Review of Harvey Nichols Forth Floor Restaurant Edinburgh

Harvey Nichols Forth Floor Restaurant in Edinburgh is a great place for a celebratory meal. I was with the guys from marketing agency Tayburn and the reason for celebration was we had won the Best B2C Marketing category at the Digital Marketing Awards. This was for our “Next Level” campaign which featured Dragon’s Den star, Duncan Bannatyne.

Review of Harvey Nichols Forth Floor Restaurant Edinburgh
View of the restaurant and the bar beyond

The restaurant is a great place to people watch. They dress up to come here and we passed some very glamorous ladies sipping champagne at the bar. Once seated the small army of waiters attended to our every need.

Review of Harvey Nichols Forth Floor Restaurant Edinburgh
A great bottle of red wine

The Sommelier was on hand to give us wine advice and we chose an excellent red called Meerlust. The bottle appeared very quickly allowing us to savour the deep flavours as we looked at the menu.

Review of Harvey Nichols Forth Floor Restaurant Edinburgh
Rabbit starter

For starter I had:

Confit of rabbit with smoked pistachio, last summer’s preserved cherries and spiced orange loaf

Lovely moist meat, nuttiness and a little surprise from the cherries. The spicy bread was very interesting and good at mopping up the rabbit confit.

Review of Harvey Nichols Forth Floor Restaurant Edinburgh
Duck main course

And for the main course:

Roast breast of Mallard duck with turnip fondant, glazed baby vegetables, vanilla and parsnip puree, mulled wine jelly

Moist and perfectly cooked duck with that exquisite jelly and the beautiful crispy veg.

Both dishes were perfectly presented – what I like to call “Masterchef Food“.

Time was pressing so we skipped dessert and went straight to coffee, reminiscing about our days on the road with the Dragon.

Over to you: Thanks for reading my review of Harvey Nichols Forth Floor Restaurant Edinburgh? Please share you own reviews of this great establishment. Click below where it says “Leave a reply”.

Review of Jamie’s Italian Restaurant in York

I find this Michelin Star restaurant thing a bit pretentious? Obviously they are fabulous accolades to win but as well as good tasty food it seems chefs need to obsess about minute fiddling details. Every cube of carrot is the same size. Plates of the same food must look identical. And they only put a few dribbles of sauce or jus on the dish to complete a pretty picture.

It all gets a bit fussy.

That’s why I find Jamie Oliver so refreshing. He just chucks food on a plate and whilst it looks beautiful it also looks individual. He won’t cut a carrot into identical cubes he’ll rip them into pieces with his hands. You won’t find a dribble of sauce but a great big dollop.

Review of Jamie's Italian Restaurant in York

So it was good to go to lunch at Jamie’s Italian in York recently. They have converted an old wine merchants building and created an authentic rustic atmosphere inside. You’ll find cured meats hanging from hooks and the walls adorned with wooden serving platters. The chefs work in full view surrounded by fresh produce.

Review of Jamie's Italian Restaurant in York

I started with Posh Garlic Mushrooms on Toast: Charred wholemeal levain rubbed with garlic & olive oil, topped with pan-fried wild mushrooms, chilli & flat-leaf parsley.

This was delicious and packed a hidden punch because they had hidden some quite vicious chilli peppers among the mushrooms.

Review of Jamie's Italian Restaurant in York

I followed this with Free Range Chicken: Grilled garlic & rosemary chicken with a tomato, olive, chilli & caper sauce.

With a tasty crispy skin the chicken was moist, succulent and floated on top of a very generous Italian sauce.

My sides were – Flash Cooked Greens: With lemon, garlic & olive oil and Funky Chips: With fresh garlic & parsley. I realised I was close to over-dosing on garlic but didn’t care because it tasted so good.

It was a great lunch and came in at a reasonable £25 per head including drinks.

Here’s the thing though.

Jamie’s Italian is a brand. They use the same menu in all 20 or so of their restaurants. So it’s formulaic. A franchise like KFC but obviously posher and backed by a well-known celebrity chef. For me though it is gloriously free from the fiddling detail associated with other famous faces and it is outstanding for it.

Over to you: Have you eaten in a Jamie’s Italian? Let me know what you thought of the food and the atmosphere – please share your thoughts by leaving a comment. If you enjoyed this review of Jamie’s Italian restaurant in York, please tweet it by clicking here.

Such a social way to eat out – Salt Yard Tapas Restaurant Review

There is something wonderfully sociable about eating tapas. Those small plates of Spanish meat, fish and vegetables served with colourful aromatic sauces. I love the flexibility of experience it gives you. You can pop into a tapas restaurant for a quick glass of wine and a charcuterie plate, or you can take a long leisurely few hours working through the menu with friends or business contacts.

Salt Yard Tapas Restaurant Review

Salt Yard (54 Goodge St London W1T 4NA), is one of the best tapas bars in the UK located in the bustling restaurant area near Charlotte Street it easily holds it’s own against competing establishments. And again flexibility is its advantage. People have coffee and cheese mid-morning, beer and a few plates of food for lunch, and wine beer and most of the menu in the evening.

It’s an award winning venue and you will have seen it on Master Chef UK – the contestants had to cook the signature “Courgette Flowers stuffed with Goat’s Cheese and drizzled with Honey”.

I recently spent an evening there with journalists and we started with a beer and a plate of deep fried chillies. Whilst these do not blow your head off with chilli heat they are salty and bitter. They get you in the mood for more drinks.

Salt Yard Tapas Restaurant Review

I selected the wine as my dinner guests checked out the menu. I was attracted to the “Pittacum (Mencia, Bierzo 2007)” described as organic and dark with pepper & blackcurrant fruit, herbal and earthy.

Very soon the chatty waitress brought the bottle and it appeared to be a popular choice. The food began to arrive with conveyer belt frequency.

First up was “Fried Squid with Tomatoes Chillies and Coriander”. I must say this was a little too fishy for me. I like squid precisely because it tastes different and this didn’t.

Salt Yard Tapas Restaurant Review

After a slightly disappointing  start came a tasty return to form. “Confit of ‘Gloucester Old Spot’ Pork Belly with Rosemary Scented Cannellini Beans”  – fantastic crackling crust and melt in the mouth moist meat below.

“Slow Roasted Chicken with Chorizo and Chickpea Stew” – a perfect Spanish dish warm and colourful.

“Grilled Underblade Fillet of Beef, Artichokes, Black Olive and Piquillo Salsa” – tender meat and earthy flavours.

A second bottle of Pittacum arrived as the journalists tucked into more fish and some of those courgette flowers. The restaurant was full now, atmospheric and noisy. A sociable way to eat has to be a accompanied by a backdrop of a hundred conversations, clanking plates, and clinking glasses.

We didn’t have any room left for a dessert even though the “Churros with Chocolate Sauce” caught my eye. We all left sated, having thoroughly enjoyed another evening of Salt Yard tapas – the social way to eat out.

Over to you: Have you ever eaten Salt Yard Tapas? What do you think of this restaurant? I’d love to hear your own Salt Yard Tapas Restaurant Review or about other similar establishments. Please post your recommendations and comments below.