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The Edinburgh Larder Licensed Cafe
New Review
The Edinburgh Larder
15 Blackfriars Street,
Edinburgh,
EH1 1NB
[View Map]
0131 556 6922

 Food with Thought -

Are mindful restaurants and cafes a 'thing' yet? 

If they were The Edinburgh Larder Café would be the poster girl/boy. 

A mindful restaurant would mean that everything from spoons to staff come with compassion and care. 

As with The Edinburgh Larder Café food would be mostly seasonal and local because that is what is best for the planet, best for us and what tastes good too. At this Blackfriars Street café just off North Bridge, the menu concentrates on doing breakfast brunch and lunch really well. 

Sandwiches comprise fillings such as seasonal vegetables, Crombie's sausages, smoked salmon and free-range chicken whilst breakfast champions produce like cooked-to-order porridge, lAyrshire bacon and Scottish honey. Juice is made from windfall apples in Kent, gin is from Barra (did we mention the license?) tea from Eteaket and coffee from Williams and Johnson in Leith. Preserves and chutneys are often homemade.

I pop along for a late and lazy Sunday lunch and order the organic sausage roll; delicious Peelham Farm minced pork infused with cumin and fennel wrapped in crispy, flaky pastry. A side of Puy lentils and parsnips has been tossed in a honey mustard vinaigrette which brings zing to the legumes and teases out the natural sweetness of the roots. Don't get me started on the vibrant radicchio and lettuce or squash and couscous; my plate was scraped clean. 

Eleonora, my food date, has demanding Italian standards and so praise for her Moroccan lamb stew was praise indeed.  She commented that it was very well-balanced with the often strongly-flavoured meat not overpowering the dish as a whole. We learnt that the lamb had been marinated overnight in turmeric, ginger, cumin, cinnamon etc. It was served with flatbread and yoghurt mixed with mint and lime. 

There are three staples that the Larder excels at - bacon butties, fruit scones (enormous and served with homemade jam and clotted cream) and gluten-free (but you would never know) dark chocolate brownies. I decided that I had to taste the latter again just to be sure – and I promptly consider buying the lot ‘to go’. Eleonora cautioned me to 'just come back another day'. 

I will and I can assure you that a visit to this splendid wee café will leave you replete, happy and ready to return too. (S. Wilson) 


Reader Reviews / Comments (view all) Average Rating: 5

Stan Krawczyk (27th July 2011), Rated: 5

We visit Edinburgh about 3-4 times a year and love it. On our travels we try out different eating emporia. Sadly one of our faves 'The Lot' closed which came as a shock, however as 1 door closes another opens and thanks to Bite Mag's review we thought to try the Edinburgh Larder.
It was late Saturday afternoon, wandering down the Royla Mile (generally avoided) found a nice olive green fronted Cafe, with a good homely feel inside.(Parents reading this will know what I mean).Turning up with a pram, you know instantly the reception you will get from the staff at a cafe or shop and in this case it was excellent! Normally there is a 'oh my god how can we handle this reaction?'
With a 19month old, its baby first and you second, of course baby will be changeable and you have to adjust your plans. Nothing was too much trouble and the staff made us feel very welcome and they were genuine about it too.
They moved a couple of tables together for us to make room and let us sort ourselves out (read: Baby!)
The atmosphere is relaxed and frendly exactly what we like, a good selection on the menu and the daily specials on the board.Various interesting produce everywhere to buy and it all looked fresh too?

We both had the home made Elderberry cordial which was superb (often these are too sweet or sickly).
I had fetta and spinach parcels, sort of large Mushka Borek, with side salad.My other half a light mixed salad and for our little one a very nice red pepper and tomatoe soup with crusty brown bread. She can be fussy but she polished this off with gusto. The food was excellent, very flavoursome highly recommended.

The Larder holds themed nights I think, one scheduled later that evening. In some places you get 'rushed out of the door' so to speak (common in Manchester Italian Restaurants when they want you out!!) but not here. Of course we were the last to leave and it takes a while to get baby stuff ready to go ,but never did they make us feel unwelcome or expected us to go, so full marks to them.

To sum up we have found our new favourite cafe. The food is excellent, reasonably priced and fresh. The building is nice and inviting with a relaxed atmosphere and above all the staff are just superb.

Now parents dont all turn up with your Bugaboos at the same time- it would be unfair to them!!!

Well done Edinburgh Larder unfortunately for you we will return!!

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