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Edinburgh food report

kate | Mar 14, 2005 03:42 PM

Just back from a long weekend in Edinburgh. The entire city smells like baked potatoes... it drove me wild since half the time I couldn't even figure out where the smell was coming from.Anyone else experience this strange, phantom potato scent in EDI?

It's a great walking city, which of course means snacking, constantly.

Greggs - although I didn't eat any pies here (closes promptly at 5pm), local friends said it was always a good bet for a freshly baked pie. Lots and lots of branches- everywhere.

I DID eat at THE PIE MAKER, which was open later, on Nicholson or Clerk Street (it's one long continuation of South Bridge Street, every block a different name). Good selection of classic and more creative pies, including vegan options. Thai mushroom and peppers pie, pepper steak pie, curried chicken pie, bridies, etc. I had a baked bean and sausage pie. Nice, light pastry.

CHOCOLATE SOUP
Great name, great place. I saw a couple branches, and went to the one on Hunter Square, on the Royal Mile. Although they do sandwiches and coffee, you have to have the chocolate soup, of course. It's a giant bowl of hot chocolate, either white or dark (dark is better - white is very sweet), with optional toppings. One of those saw me through five hours of walking without so much as a hunger pang. Not for the faint-hearted...

THE TEA ROOM, Canonsgate Way, bottom end of the Royal Mile. I looked in on Mrs Fortsythe's Tearoom, recommended in a post below, which is in an alleyway directly opposite the Museum of the Child on the Royal Mile. It looked just like a tea room should, but we went with the TEA ROOM because it was airier and lighter. I had a baked potato with haggis (had to try it somewhere), which was very nice, and very filling. The scones were good too; they do a lovely cream tea.

Chinese Food: I know, I know, what sort of person goes to Edinburgh for chinese food? Well, the kind who lives in Italy and hasn't had a good chinese meal in over two months, that's who. There's lots of chinese food on offer in Newington, which is a student-inhabited area close to the university. Had a couple of acceptable but not outstanding takeouts. I did,however, really enjoy a meal at THE RAINBOW ARCH,8-16a Morrison Street, Haymarket. Their chicken chow mein was a relatively good version of how I like it in London - fine noodles piled into a nest, the middle soft and the outer edges crispy. They also have a sizeable dim sum selection. I was very boring in my choices - char-siu bao, har kow, etc. were all lovely. Just make sure to ask for the dim sum menu. They are open until 3am.

If you go to Loch Lomond, and go via the lovely, peaceful town of Luss, make sure to leave room for a wonderful lunch at the Coach House. Generous bowls of fresh soup with buttered bread on the side, and superb scones.

Aside from that, make sure to eat your fill of crumpets, cadbury's creme eggs, tablet (scottish fudge), shortbread, and other highly healthy foods!

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