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Dishoom - Virtuous Health Tonics from Bombay with Love
New Review
Dishoom
3 St Andrew Square,
Edinburgh,
EH2
0131 202 6406
Mon – Wed 8am – 11pm; Thu – Sat 8am – 12am; Sun 9am – 11pm

Finally! A mocktail menu for serious non-drinkers. Having decided to take 2019 teetotal, my journey took me to Bombay, or close enough, Dishoom on St Andrew’s Square. Having enjoyed an indulgent feast many moons ago at the Shoreditch Dishoom, I was excited to try lunch with ‘dry tipples’ closer to home. I was not disappointed.

The vibe is retro Raj, with painstaking attention to detail with the decor. Surroundings briefly observed, I was SO curious about how they would pull off a non-alcoholic Old Fashioned. Totally gobsmacked - it had the kick and the aftertaste of a short cocktail, definitely "fire in the throat, warmth in the belly” as the Dry Tipple menu promised. The sober husband enjoyed his minty virgin Mojito with enthusiasm. Another winner.

We followed our waitress, Hannah’s dining suggestions, and shared the Pau Bhaji to start, a bowl of spicy mashed vegetables, apparently a staple dish for using up leftover veg in India. The buttered homemade bun dipped into the piquant stew was a delicious opener and whet our appetite for another round of sober concoctions (how extravagant!). I had been told to try the Virtuous Tulsi Sour, however am not a fan of mixed whisky drinks. I did what I was told, and was rewarded when it tasted like one of those old fashioned lemon sweeties with sherbet in the middle. Husband pushed the boat out with a Dry Monsoon Martini. I could have sworn this espresso martini-alike was alcoholic. Presentation was impeccable, served frothy fresh from the cocktail shaker. We were trying to work out ingredients and noted the presence of ‘Dishooms secret spirit essence’. What is it? I must learn!

For mains we shared Chole Puri, chickpea curry dunked with delicately puffed puri bread. I devoured a Chana Chaat Salad, which would have made a lunch in itself (noted for future), cous cous and chickpea salad bejewelled with pomegranate seeds served with a minty avocado dip. Other half went meaty, for lamb Salli Boti. Apparently it’s the Chef’s Edinburgh special, the flavoursome gravy quickly scooped up in roti. However, the unexpected star of the food was the House Black Daal. Normally I’m indifferent to daal, perhaps too many mediocre ones under my belt, but the Dishoom special was fought over between us. As the menu says, it really is "dark, rich and deeply flavoured”, ‘twas almost like pudding.

We were pleasantly stuffed, but clear-headed, so a glass of the House Chai shared a sweet and spicy note to depart on. I will be back, but perhaps next time I’ll venture down to their basement bar, the Permit Room for a late-night ‘Dry Tipple’. As a serial soberista I am very excited by the quality and depth of flavour from the brains behind this genius cocktail menu.... sans booze. (Tracy Griffen)

 

 

 

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