For my birthday, I was treated to an outstanding 9 course meal at the glamorous Number One restaurant within the Balmoral Hotel in Edinburgh. Number One is a well known Michelin-starred restaurant which is regarded as one of Scotland’s best. The team is lead by Executive Chef Jeff Bland, who uses top Scottish ingredients to create edible art which both fascinated me and tasted incredible.
The Balmoral Hotel, Edinburgh
Cocktails &’canapés in the bar
Fois gras macaron? Bizarre? Yes, but utterly delicious.
We decided to have the chef’s tasting menu with matched wines. They give you a basic menu which literally gives a basic clue as to what you’ll be served. When each course arrived we dissected them and analysed them to discuss the ingredients and cooking methods. It’s a foodie thing. We need to work out what herb that’s in the sauce, or how the salmon was cooked!
We had a selection of breads to choose from to begin with – I opted for a cheese and caramelised onion loaf. It was divine.
I’m not going to give a blow by blow breakdown of each dish – there is so much detail that I could go into, and I think the pictures speak for themselves. I’ll just give a little commentary where necessary!
Amuse Bouche – Salted Cod
Served with Laurent-Perrier NV champagne. Which happens to be the very first champagne that I have genuinely enjoyed drinking – I’ve tolerated it before, but finally I have one that I enjoy!
Sauté Fois Gras
Served with Pinot Gris, Domaine Bott Geyl (2009). Pea purée, fois gras croquette, coulis.
Served with Albariño, Castel de Bouza (2012). Apple sorbet, curds, lemon pearls, petals.
Served with Julia Kemper, Vinho Branco (2012). Sous vide cooked, crayfish, (I can’t remember the purée – I want to say parsnip!).
Served with Nerello Mascalese, Il Passo (2012). Large couscous, vegetables, truffle, jus. The beef was served rare and as many of you know, I’m not yet at that stage. I managed this and did really enjoy it, but I’m definitely still a ‘medium’ girl.
Selection of Cheese
Served with assorted breads, crackers, grapes, quince jelly.
Tonka bean ice cream – unfortunately I can’t remember what else this dish consisted of!
Fresh strawberry, strawberry and basil mousse, fruit pastille, brittle, coulis, meringue and clotted cream. Served with Beerenauslese, Domäne Wachau (2011).
This meal, or should I say culinary experience, was just brilliant. The only meal I can compare it to is Restaurant 21212, but as they’re both very different, I couldn’t possibly pick a favourite. The restaurant is low lit, comfortably quiet and spaced and beautifully decorated. The staff are absolutely fantastic: you’re served by a host of staff from waiting staff to a sommelier. Everything is explained, the food is beautifully cooked and presented. The service was slick and yet not too pretentious (yes, there is such a thing). I’d recommend dining here to absolutely anyone who enjoys top quality food.
After our meal we decided to try out the trendy Balmoral Bar! A fantastic night!
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