Duck’s Inn at Aberlady

  Duck’s Inn at Aberlady Main Street, Aberlady, East Lothian, EH32 0RE 01875 870682 www.ducks.co.uk The Bill Lunch and Dinner 2 courses £19.95 | 3 courses £23.95 The Score Cooking 8/10 | Service 4/5 | Flavour 4.5/5 | Value 4.5/5 TOTAL 21/25 Malcolm Duck was a fixture on the Edinburgh restaurant scene (latterly Duck’s at…

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Whigham’s Wine Cellars

  Whighams Wine Cellars 13 Hope Street, Edinburgh EH2 4EL 0131 225 8674  www.whighams.com The Bill A la Carte Starters £4.95 – £6.95 | Mains: £10.50 – £38.95 | Desserts £5.95  The Score Cooking 6/10 | Service 4.5/5 | Flavour 4/5 | Value 4.5/5 TOTAL 19/25 Envy, if thy jaundiced eye, Through this window chance…

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Soleto – Guest Reviewer Miranda Heggie

Soleto Bistro Trattoria Italiana 11 Commercial Road, Southampton. SO15 1GF 023 8023 4044  http://www.soleto.co.uk/ The Bill A la Carte Starters: £3.50 – £16.00 (includes sharing portions)  Mains: £12.50 – £23.00  The Score Cooking 8/10 | Service 5/5 | Flavour 4/5 | Value 4/5 TOTAL 21/25 Living south of the border sometimes has its advantages, and…

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Tom Eats! Best Dishes

Peat Inn Exterior

When I first set up the predecessor to this blog, my good friend Michael G, now a proud resident of County Cork, suggested that I was making a rod for my own back. Five years on, I felt well qualified to say I had proved him wrong. That, however, was before lockdown. Other reviewers have…

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Tom Eats an Awful Lot in One Day in Bologna

The article on Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale in this week’s On The Side blog attracted a lot of interest. Many were completely unaware of the existence of the stuff, as was I before a trip to Bologna, capital of Emilia Romagna, and now my favourite Italian city. The highlight was the food tour. Now before you…

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Balsamic – No, not vinegar

Balsamic and Cheese

This week I had my first post lockdown pint. The Raeburn in Stockbridge has opened its outdoor bar as a takeaway. They have a large beer garden, which they can’t use just now, so you have the daft sight of people leaning on the street side of the railings, looks of rapture on their faces.…

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Miranda Heggie Reviews Drinks Offers: Part 2 – Beers & Spirits

Miranda Heggie Last week, journalist Miranda Heggie shared some tips on wine offers available from online drinks companies. This week she turns her attention to beers and spirits. Let’s begin with beer. Beer52: Founded in Edinburgh back in 2013 and now the world’s most popular beer club, Beer52 will send you a mixed case of…

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Miranda Heggie Reviews Drinks Offers: Part 1 – Wine

Averys Malbec Small

Miranda Heggie Since lockdown it has been reported that retail sales were at a record low and that off licence sales had soared. Journalist Miranda Heggie points out that as pubs and the majority of shops were closed, this hardly counts as news. Like the rest of us Miranda is restricted to drinking at home.…

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Tom Eats! Fish and Chips

Fish and Chips small

Don’t be fooled by the headline. This column has not yet resorted to the delights of takeaway food; however, your diary will have told you, as mine did, that the first Friday in June is National Fish and Chips Day. Actually, your diary has played you false. This year, owing to a little local difficulty,…

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Carry Out and Carry On – Carol Main Reviews Merienda

Merienda 30 North West Circus Place, Edinburgh EH3 6TP 0131 220 2020   www.eat-merienda.com Campbell Mickel Carol Main For anyone reading this, it’s a fairly safe bet that one of the best things about going on holiday is the food. There is endless joy and pleasure in thinking about regional cuisine as part of choosing the…

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Restaurants – How (and Why) Do I Love Thee?

And before I start counting the ways, please do NOT write in to point out that I ought to have said ye instead of thee. As I may have written before, there’s  room for only one annoying pedant in this blog. As a boss of L’s, a great stalwart of the Labour Party, was wont…

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To Takeaway or Not To Takeaway

Don’t let the two week break make you think that activity here at Casa Johnston has slowed. Au contraire. My willing helpers, PAs, research assistants, sous chefs and food stylists, have been beavering away as usual. No furloughing here. Material for future On The Side columns is tucked away in the can: recipes for Tom Cooks! are…

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Golden Oldies – The Fat Duck, Bray

The Fat Duck High Street, Bray, Berks SL6 2AQ 01628 580333   www.thefatduck.co.uk The Bill 15 courses: £275 + Service (2017 price) The Score Cooking 10/10 | Service 5/5 | Flavour 5/5 | Value 5/5 TOTAL 25/25 Obviously there are no restaurants to review at present. Tom Eats! will provide a varied programme which will include…

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Trotters Independent Condiments and Super Meals

  Trotter’s Independent Condiments and now Super Meals – Good Guys Doing Good Things www.trottersindependent.co.uk/super-meals 07712 339 275 I had one more restaurant review in the can. It was half done, as I had intended to revisit, the first lunch having resulted in rather too much duplication. When I invite others out to a Tom…

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Supper Club at The Strawberry Barn – Guest Reviewer David Dickson

Strawberry Barn Interior

Thistly Cross Roundabout Dunbar, East Lothian EH42 1ST 01368 860573  www.belhavenfruitfarm.co.uk The Bill Supper Club  5 courses: £40.00 The Score Cooking 8/10 | Service 4/5 | Flavour 4/5 | Value 4/5 TOTAL 20/25   I thought long and hard about continuing to publish reviews, given present circumstances. I have decided to press ahead with what…

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The Peat Inn

Peat Inn Exterior

Restaurant With Rooms Peat Inn, near St Andrews, Fife KY15 5LH 01334 840206 www.thepeatinn.co.uk The Bill Set Lunch  3 courses: £25.00 Dinner Menu of the Day  3 courses: £58.00 Tasting Menu 6 courses: £78.00 A la Carte First Dishes: £19.00 – £20.00 | Second Dishes: £28.00 – £35.00 To Follow: £11.00 – £12.00 The Score…

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Fabric

Fabric

  2 Canmore Street, Dunfermline, Fife, KY12 7NT 01383 733430  www.fabricdrinkanddine.co.uk   The Bill Lunch and Dinner 2 courses: £13.95 | 3 courses: £17.25 A la Carte Starters: £5.25 – £6.95 | Mains: £8.95 – £26.95 |  Desserts: £4.95 – £5.25 The Score Cooking 6/10 | Service 4.5/5 | Flavour 4/5 | Value 5/5 TOTAL…

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L’escargot bleu

L'Escargot Bleu Dining Room

  56 Broughton Street, Edinburgh EH1 3SA 0131 556 1600  www.lescargotbleu.co.uk   The Bill  Set Lunch  2 courses £12.60  Set Dinner (pre 18.45) 2 courses £14.90 A la Carte Starters: £6.00 – £14.00 | Mains: £14.00 – £24.00  Desserts: £6.00 – £7.50 The Score Cooking 7.5/10 | Service 5/5 | Flavour 4.5/5 | Value 5/5…

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Haar Restaurant

Dean Banks

Kinnettles Hotel, 127 North Street,  St Andrews, Fife KY6 9AG 01334 473387   www.haarrestaurant.com The Bill Dinner Tasting Menu 5 courses: £50 A la Carte Starters: £11.00 – £16.00 | Mains: £20.00 – £35.00  Desserts: £9.50 The Score Cooking 7/10 | Service 5/5 | Flavour 4/5 | Value 4/5 TOTAL 20/25   There is something about…

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Le Bistrot by Patisserie Maxime

French Institute

59 – 63 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1RN 0131 225 4021  www.lebistrot.co.uk The Bill Table d’Hote Lunch 2 courses: £13.95 | 3 courses: £16.95 Dinner A la Carte Starters: £5.95 – £9.95 | Mains: £12.95 – £32.95  Desserts: £5.95 – £6.95 The Score Cooking 6/10 | Service 3/5 | Flavour 4/5 | Value 5/5…

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Cafe Royal Oyster Bar

Cafe Royal Interior

19 West Register Street, Edinburgh EH2 2AA 0131 556 1884 www.belhavenpubs.co.uk/pubs/midlothian/cafe-royal-circle-bar The Bill A la Carte Oysters(6): £12.00 – £15.00 | Starters: £6.00 – £12.00  Mains: £13.00 – £35.00* | Desserts: £6.00 – £7.00 * Lobster is market price, probably higher The Score Cooking 2.5/10 | Service 3/5 | Flavour 2/5 | Value 2/5 TOTAL…

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Two Fat Ladies in the City

Two Fat Ladies

118A Blythswood Street, Glasgow G2 4EG   0141 847 0088  www.https://twofatladiesrestaurant.com/citycentre The Bill Table D’Hote Lunch 2 courses; £16.00 | 3 courses £19.00 Table D’Hote Dinner 2 courses; £18.00 | 3 courses £21.00 A la Carte Starters: £5.00 – £11.00 | Mains: £16.00 – £22.50 |  Desserts: £6.50 – £8.50 The Score Cooking 7/10 |…

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