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Dominic Jack at Castle Terrace
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33-35 Castle Terrace, ,
Edinburgh,
EH1 2EL
0131 229 1222
Tues-Sat 12-2pm, 6:30-10pm

Three top notch restaurants in one month but all with their own unique style. Norn the punky young upstart, Number One a sparkling Edinburgh jewel and Dominic Jack innovative, creative and modern. 
 
Canapés of beetroot and goats cheese biscuit, salt cod babajuan and Caesar salad state that this experience, not merely a meal, is going to have spectacle. Visually these canapés are a pink macaron, a blackberry and a shiny green bubble of liquid. 
 
Panna cotta of Arbroath Smokie precedes an exciting visit downstairs to the Chef's table where we watch a kitchen ballet that starts with a communal "Oui Chef"as the order arrives and ends with a forensic group examination of dishes leaving the pass. For us a tartare of salmon served sushi style while we watched. A thick rectangle of fillet, black sesame seeds, puffed rice, a quenelle of wasabi ice cream and cubes of soy jelly. Texture would be a recurring theme. 

Back upstairs to the recently £1M refurbed Michelin- starred restaurant for mille-feuille of Wye Valley asparagus served with Paddy's Milestone cheese and aged balsamic and onto my 'starter'! I was intrigued by the description scallop in light curry sauce but wowed by what was actually a full on curry, fat Orkney scallops in a pool of mild sauce and all the flavours of the Raj, coconut, sultanas, pilau, poppadum. Mr Bite enjoyed pea soup with Dunsyre Blue cheese ravioli. 

Next up monkfish for him wrapped in Parma ham with a 'honeycomb' of onion rings on top or was it fishing net? For me saddle of venison from Stobo Estate with celery, celeriac, apple and caramelised walnuts. Pink, thick and juicy, good earthy flavours cooked perfectly of course. 

Some very interesting wines were chosen for us throughout by sommelier Joel who I know from previous visits.  Gewurztraminer,  Little Beauty Estate, Marlborough 2011 was particularly stand out with my curry themed scallops as was an inspired choice for Mr Bite's monkfish Musar Jeune, Chateau Musar, Bekaa Valley, Lebanon, 2012. I also like the accompaniment to my sushi Guerrouane Les Trois Domaines a refreshing Sauv Blanc from Morocco blended with clairette and Ugni Blanc grapes.

Desserts tasted as good as they looked; 'king of the soufflés' for Mr Bite aka a ginormous Cheffy puff of caramel with chocolate ganache and popcorn ice cream. For me my favourite fruit, peach - confit and caramelised Peregrine to be precise with honeycomb ice cream and rosemary. If these descriptions sound good it is nothing compared to the exquisitely executed dishes themselves. 
 
Castle Terrace definitely over delivers. You will be wowed by imagination, precision, skill, texture, techniques and flavour. The service is outstanding and the restaurant classy and comfortable. (S. Wison)
 

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