One of the casualties of the pandemic was l’escargot blanc, a favourite with the Bite team and run by Fred Berkmiller. Thankfully Fred retains l’escargot bleu in Broughton Street which is going from strength to strength with the opening of its basement wine bar.
‘Blanc’ premises were bought by Dean Banks of Masterchef, Haar and Pompadour fame and Banks also sold seafood boxes from Haar during the pandemic.
The downstairs bar of the new Dulse is open for wine, cocktails and small plates of seafood while the restaurant is scheduled for opening on July 22. Mrs Bite wanted to visit but COVID-19 remains with us and instead had to isolate.
Luckily, Bite contributor The Go-Between had also made plans to check out Dulse so we got a report (filed in haste):
"I was welcomed graciously as a solo diner to the table. Their small plates are full of colour & flavour, & served in a very attractive bar area. Started with the Sugar & Spice cocktail, with citrus & a mere hint of ginger, which was delicious (if a little excessive at £16, even for Champagne topping!).
Ordered three small plates and had speedy and charming service of both monkfish ceviche and raw dressed scallop. Monkfish ceviche was marinated in passionfruit & mango, which balanced nicely any sharpness, enhanced by pinpoints of hot red chilli and dressed with coriander. Tiny bits of the membrane can show up as tough in monkfish but very little sign of that.
Hot langoustines had arrived so I turned my attention to a chunkily-sliced, deliciously creamy-textured Orkney scallop, in a summery elderflower & strawberry vinaigrette, elevated with umeboshi plum - terrific.
By this time checking out a Slovenian Chardonnay - (preferred my cocktail!) - next time would give the Israeli Marawi a try. Interesting list though, even by the glass.
The ‘langos’, creel-caught and freshly delivered were a delight - small but with very sweet, softly cooked meat and delicate shells from which I was able to easily pick out surprising amounts of meat - very well-sourced shellfish, simply and perfectly prepared.
A family graduation party at the bar provided extra celebratory colour to the proceedings and it all felt absolutely lovely, especially when I saw the 50 per cent food discount had taken the heat out of the bill, as it’s definitely indulgent treat food!
Follows nicely from the feeling of careful provenance you got from Fred’s produce in its previous incarnation” (The Go-Between).
I can’t wait to be out of COVID jail as the Trout Pastrami and BBQ Octopus are calling my name not to mention the Cumbrae Oysters. And, as TGB points out, the revolving Coravin list makes a glass of something special accessible. The fifty per cent food discount runs until July 17; walk-ins only.
Dulse looks set to be a great addition to Edinburgh's food scene (S. Wilson).
Dulse - 17 Queensferry Street, Edinburgh, EH2 4QW. Tuesday - Wednesday 5 pm - Midnight
Thursday - Saturday 12 pm - Midnight T: 0131 573 7575 E: Info@dulserestaurant.com