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  • Writer's pictureSharon Wilson

Harvey Nichols Forth Floor Brasserie & Bar - heavenly inspiration

Divine Inspiration

Mrs. Bite and Harvey go way back.

The famous store opened its Edinburgh branch in 2002 shortly before the first issue of Bite magazine was published. From the off, those responsible for marketing the bar, restaurant and brasserie on the Forth Floor, (named because of the news of Fife), focused on making it friendly and accessible to local people.

This ethos has stood the test of time. The flagship Knightsbridge store was once the habitat of Sloane Rangers not to mention Eddie and Patsy of Ab Fab ‘dahlings’. However, a British and International expansion signalled a more inclusive approach. 

I am here by invitation and happy for the opportunity to decompress after a week of heavy lifting. Yes I know I am not down a coal mine but the modern workplace has its bespoke challenges. 

And what better way to begin my evening of relaxation than with a salty, zesty Paloma as I watch the mixologists shake and stir at the horseshoe bar in the brasserie area? 

When Nicky arrives, we move to our table and admire the terrace and skyline which takes in the gold ghost sign of the former Jenner’s building, St Andrews Square, the castle and Fife.

Tiger Prawn Risotto

As we watch the clouds and weather we sip an aptly named cocktail ‘Divine Inspiration’; flavours of rhubarb, ginger and peach schnapps meld into a refreshing summer highball.

The starters are all tempting and I have English asparagus dressed with gentle blobs of white burrata garnished with salty Parma ham shards for crunch and texture. Nicky has Grilled Goat’s Cheese Crostini.

The main courses are more devilishly indulgent. Nicky’s fragrant Saffron Risotto is a richer, heartier dish than we expect courtesy of tiger prawns and chorizo.  I can hear my Italian friend whisper in my ear figuratively that the chorizo is unnecessary. Still, I have food envy, and there is a high likelihood that I will return to the brasserie to eat this dish. When I do, I will pair it with the same Pecorino we are now sipping. It’s light and floral but it also has sharp minerality. 

I enjoy pink noisettes of Scottish Roast Rump of Lamb in a pleasantly soupy spelt risotto. Then dessert is a “two spoons please” Banoffee Cheesecake; a limp attempt at curbing our night of indulgence.

We had a fab time at Harvey Nichols Forth Floor with attractive plates of good food and drink while the staff were attentive, friendly, funny and helpful. 

After 22 years the Forth Floor is still a vital and valued part of Edinburgh’s hospitality landscape.

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