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Bistro Du Vin - Unbuttoned and al fresco
New Review
Bistro Du Vin
11 Bristo Pl,,
0131 285 1479

'The Gascony Paradox' is the name given to phenomenon whereby despite the large amounts of saturated fat eaten by the French they have a very low incidence of heart disease. 

Various theories attempt to explain this including my favourite which is that red wine ensures Gallic heart health by somehow counteracting the sat fat.

Whatever the science, the French appear to enjoy their food guilt-free and when Mr Bite and I visited the sheltered, cosy courtyard of Bistro du Vin we were encouraged by our surroundings and the menu to adopt this unbuttoned attitude. 

To start we chose Blossom Tree (Carounn Gin, elderflower cordial, plum sake, lemon juice crème de Mure, soda water) and Apple & Ginger (Carounn Gin, ginger syrup, and juice) cocktails from the pop up Carounn Gin Bar which is in the courtyard until the end of September. Then we ordered prawns with aioli, pissadiliere pizza and pomme frites with pancetta and Gruyère.

Prawns are presented whole but they have been de-veined, shelled and beheaded so you can enjoy them immediately without the messy work. Pissadiliere is a flan of caramelised onions and a regional speciality of Nice. Du Vin's take is a slim, fired pizza base, a spread of the sweet onions and a ratatouille-inspired topping of bitter black olives, juicy peppers, watercress and vegetarian-style ‘Parmesan’. The allumette cut chips are proper crispy from being cooked in duck fat but this French version of ‘chips and cheese’ has just a sprinkle of Gruyère.

I have a glass of Minervois wine from the region of Languedoc and the black fruits are punchy. There is some redcurrant too – think black and red wine gums.

Desserts follow the unpretentious but indulgent theme. A milk chocolate mousse for Mr Bite is unapologetically large and topped with cream. And for me a baked St. Marcelin cheese and sugary fruit fig roll to spread it on; I am almost blushing now.

Mrs Bite has spent a fair bit of time in France and menu items like pizza, steak haché with sauce poivre and salads recall everyday living. This is authentic food found on any street in France. There are also Plats Principaux dishes such as steak tartare, calves liver and fish as well as sharing platters such as fruits de mer.

The food at Bistro du Vin deserves to be enjoyed, washed down with lashings of good wine and an enormous dose of Joie de Vivre! (S. Wilson)
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