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The Voodoo Rooms
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The Voodoo Room
19a West Register Street,
0131 556 7060
Mon-Thur 4pm-1am; Fri-Sun noon-1am

 Although I have visited The Voodoo Rooms for drinks, live music and the famous Vegas club night, I have never eaten there and it seemed about time to try out the menu.

If you like cocktails and have never been to The Voodoo Rooms, you're missing out. 

For a start, the building itself is stunning, with tonnes of original features and a decadent colour scheme. The selection of spirits is impressive, and the award-winning bar staff are skilled mixologists. The bar space though is quite narrow and the lighting kept cosily low, so expect a lively atmosphere at the weekend. 

The dining room is just off the main bar and a good place to escape the crowds. A surprisingly varied and tempting food menu, combined with the extensive drinks list, meant that our attentive server was sent away several times before we were ready to order. It wouldn't have been right not to sample the interesting and creative cocktails, so we chose the Whisky Macklemore with Mackmyra whisky, ginger, crème de banane and walnut bitters, and the Captain Scene – Diplomatico Mantuano rum, Olorosso sherry, chocolate bitters and pistachio syrup; both strong but very well balanced.  

One decision made, we then ordered the fresh and zingy 'seaweed cured Loch Duart salmon with cucumber chutney and horseradish yogurt', and the 'fried goats cheese with pear, crispy prosciutto, balsamic reduction and dressed leaves' to start. Both were tasty, with the latter dish being a particularly generous portion. For mains, the 'spice crusted lamb rump, Indian potatoes and coconut and tomato sauce' was a triumph, while the 'lemon, garlic and herb chicken, coconut rice with mango and chilli salsa' was enjoyable though perhaps a little dry.

Although the The Voodoo Rooms offers high quality food at reasonable prices in a classy, intimate setting, if visiting for dinner it is worth bearing in mind that the venue also hosts live music of all genres. This means it can be noisy in the dining room, which may be a good thing or a bad thing - easily solved in our case by relocating to the bar for 'dessert'. As it just happened to be International Scotch Whisky Day, I opted for the Millionaire's Shortbread cocktail to finish the meal – a smoky, sweet and rich combination of Laphroig whisky, walnut liqueur, espresso, caramel, brown sugar and crushed biscuits. Certainly not a drink to start the night but a perfect conclusion!  (D. Spencer) 

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It's magic!

This city centre bar could have easily opted for a tacky theme but thankfully it chose sophistication. Gothic ornate decor, pot plants and boothes  give a louche New Orleans vibe. Whilst the cocktails are peerless the food is none too shabby either. It's a fave of mine and Mr Bite's so a recent change of both cocktail and food menu demanded a visit.  

I started with the salt 'n' pepper margarita. It's well worth a few visits to tick off all the drinks on the new list. 

You won't like the goats cheese mousse though,  I said to Mr B. Proved wrong he declared it perfectly scrummy. It was served in a crostini stack with sun-blush tomato & red onion marmalade and his plate was scraped. Meanwhile I had the scallops with  Spanish black pudding. Not as soft spicy as Stornoway, more robust, a carrot puree provided sweet balance. 

Mr Bite chose the special of fillet steak with prawns , sauteed potatoes superfood watercress, tomatoes topped with parmesan and breadcrumbs and plenty of herby buttery sauce. My pasta was honestly one of the best I have ever eaten. Four large ravioli were stuffed with minced prawn, topped with parmesan shavings, prawns dotted the plate and it all lounged in buttery sauce. Just a hint of chilli flecked about. This is a dish that I would return specifically to eat. In the world of pasta it just doesn't get better. 

Being understandably full I opted for a cocktail in lieu of pudding. My Captain Scene comprised  Diplomatico Reserva Rum, Olorosso Sherry, chocolate bitters and pistachio syrup; a perfect choice for a balanced and subtly flavoured digestif. Mr B managed to squeeze in the chocolate chilli tart - rich, dark and sultry as a Carribean night but with subtle heat. 

The Voodoo Rooms understand  balance and flavour. Whilst this is well recognised in their award-winning cocktail delivery it is apparent in the food menu too. But not so much that they forget hedonism, really it's all about indulgence. Bring it! (S. Wilson)

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