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10 Lady Lawson Street,
0131 221 1222
Tues-Sat 12 noon - 2pm and 5.30pm-10pm

The menu here presents under 4 headings - from generous canapé-sized Bites at c(£2.50), which would be appropriate enjoyed with an original herbal cocktail in the peaceful garden area behind this interesting reclaimed shell, to Small, Large & Sweet, plus a couple of chalked-up daily specials.

At very reasonable prices, expect portions more gourmet than gourmand. While 3 of us had plenty on our main courses, my husband was disappointed by the tiny piece of halibut on his main, injured by being further halved lengthwise & seared, leaving its dense flesh too dry.

Two of us had the sea bass, tomato & artichoke starter £8) - simply stunning, with the skin well seasoned & beautifully crispy against the soft, sweet fish & vegetable juices. The potato, samphire & egg yolk starter (£6) was also well-received. The Grierson's lamb loin with delicious baby chanterelles & a Welsh onion cake (£7.50) was simply to die for, with sweet caramelised fine onion melting under a superfine small crisp-edged potato slice top, & the lamb divine - evenly & perfectly cooked pink.

We tried just two Sweets - a chocolate & almond 'pie' (£7.50) finding its name from being wrapped in pastry like a spring roll, & a 'burnt cream', unctuously paired with rhubarb from Phantassie in East Lothian. Coffee comes with a vintage tin of petit fours - starring a yummy fudgy blue-cheese-look-alike.

There's a sizeable drinks offering from cocktails through a decent quality red list; less appealing on whites. Pacheco organic Monastrell/Syrah (£25) was a fabulous, affordable choice with our meal.

On the tables, one candle between four people is woefully inadequate - impromptu barbeques threaten as diners huddle squinting to read the very light type on brown paper over their flame; whilst an unlit blackboard, though suitably huge, bears small illegible scrawls.

Timely kitchen service of exceptional flavour & quality made up for unexceptional table service. Having left a £20 note on the table as 10% tip, I felt totally unacknowledged on leaving. On returning for lunch, the food was again generally excellent, with knockout duck fat chips & a stunningly well-flavoured rib eye steak (£17.50), which easily transcended its poor presentation on a tiny side plate. Again service more adequate than fully engaged though this may resolve as just opened. (The Go-Between)

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