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  • Writer's pictureSharon Wilson

The Chef’s Table at Commons Club


The new Virgin hotel which opened in Victoria Street 2022 is a swanky addition to Edinburgh’s hospitality landscape.


Everything is carefully curated. From the displays of eclectic art and album covers, to features accented in Virgin scarlet to the Commons Club restaurant and bars and their respective menus. Sir Richard Branson’s standards grace every detail.


On the 50th anniversary of Mike Oldfield’s Tubular Bells I note the framed album cover in the reception area and head to the Chef’s Table for a tasting menu by chef Emma Hanley.


The Chef’s Table is located in the Commons Club restaurant where clean Scandic lines meet homely, Italian artefacts and is next to the buzzy open kitchen.

Tasting Menu

Emma introduces her dishes, the sommelier the wines, Leon is the mixologist and general manager, Callum oversees the whole experience. You can choose to pair the tasting menu with cocktails or wines.


First course is Monkfish which has been ceviched in citrus and this is accompanied by a mindblowing Apple Gimlet made with Porter’s Orchard Gin served in a dinky coupé.


Quail with blueberries and celeriac is a perfect balance of game, fruit and earthiness. I feel I should be eating this bird under a tea towel.


Venison comes with charcoal mashed potato. Smokiness is complemented by a Whisky Highball comprising Monkey Shoulder Whisky and Lapsang Souchong.


We are still in Autumn at Commons Club with dishes rooted in orchards and hedgerows.


Two dishes don’t quite hit the spot: Jerusalem Artichoke with egg (I dislike the slippery texture) and while the Sea Buckthorn Sorbet for dessert is mouth-puckeringly good I feel it needs cream rather than yoghurt to balance the sharpness. Our party agrees however, that we like our palates to be surprised and challenged.


As well as the Gimlet and Highball the English Sparkling wine ‘Fitz’ stands out as does the Palmers & Co Champagne and then there is the Hustler’s Negroni. Throw three dice which determine the gin, bitters and vermouth which comprise your cocktail. My kind of fun.


If you like swish surroundings, conviviality, great staff and a premium offering you will like the Commons Club a lot. (S. Wilson)


Commons Club - 1 Victoria Street, Edinburgh, EH1 2EX - 0131 526 4810 Opening hours - from noon daily.









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