Girl Versus Food

Reviews, recipes and thoughts from a Scottish food blogger

Tag: Paul Tamburrini

Review: Paul Tamburrini Edinburgh

I was recently lucky enough to be invited to enjoy a tasting menu at Paul Tamburrini’s restaurant in The Macdonald Holyrood Hotel. What a way to spend a Monday evening! The restaurant, located close to the Scottish Parliament, opened around 18 months ago.

Paul Tamburrini trained with Marco Pierre White at the renowned L’Escargot in London and has since had stints at some of the Scotland’s best restaurants such as Martin Wishart, Rogano and Hotel du Vin.

I tried out a six-course surprise tasting menu with paired wine. The amuse bouche was a crab and lemongrass chowder but the texture was surprisingly more like a foam than what I would expect as a chowder. The lemongrass managed not to overpower the delicate crab. A great start to the meal!

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Next up was the rich and buttery foie gras. It came with a white wine jelly and aubergine miso puree. The acidity of the paired Gewurztraminer wine cut through the richness of the dish. image2

The following dish was probably my favourite; Orkney sea scallop with caramelised cauliflower, cauliflower puree and curry oil. The scallop was sweet and cooked perfectly and the dish was paired with an Austrian white which complimented it well. image3

The duck was the main course, served with braised chicory, brambles and celeriac puree. I really enjoyed the flavours in this dish but it did strike me as more of an autumnal dish than one I would expect to be served in Spring. It was served with a lovely, fruity Pinot Noir.

Dessert was crispy choux bun, served with a caramel sauce and chocolate ice cream. The sweet decadence was just what I was looking for from the dessert.

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To finish the meal I was served Tete de Moine; a cheese from the Swiss mountains, which is served in thin shavings. Apparently this is to help the flavour and odour develop as more oxygen reaches the surface. The cheese was served with quince and some lovely walnut bread. It was paired with sherry; whilst I do like sherry, the amontillado didn’t quite worked for me and I swapped it for a port which was more to my taste. image2

The main hostess who served us was fantastic; great service and got the timings just right. The other staff were young and a little less experienced but definitely keen to please. The restaurant is stylish and modern and the experience overall was excellent.

Review: Paul Tamburrini’s new Edinburgh restaurant

The Macdonald Holyrood Hotel, close to The Scottish Parliament, is home to an exciting new restaurant called Bistro Deluxe by Paul Tamburrini.

There has been a trend in recent years, for big name chefs to put their names to hotel restaurants. Heston Blumenthal, Gordon Ramsay and Marco Pierre White have been just some of the famous faces associated with hotel dining experiences. I was intrigued when I heard that Paul Tamburrini was collaborating with Macdonald Hotels in their new Bistro Deluxe at the Holyrood Hotel.

Paul Tamburrini trained with Marco Pierre White at the renowned L’Escargot in London and has since had stints at some of the Scotland’s best restaurants such as Martin Wishart, Rogano and Hotel du Vin. With a C.V. like that, I couldn’t wait to try his food!

The restaurant and kitchen at The Holyrood Hotel have had a quarter million pound make-over and the result looks high-end with décor in shades of muted greys and browns. The bistro also has a toasty fire; the perfect area for a post dinner nightcap.

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I was lucky enough to try out the five-course tasting menu*, allowing me to sample some of Chef’s favourite dishes paired with the sommelier’s wine choices.

After a tasty chicken broth amuse bouche paired with English pink fizz, I was ready for the first course; foie gras. It was rich and buttery and topped with a beautiful slice of caramelised apple.

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It was really interesting to have the oysters in the middle of the menu. The Lindisfarne oysters were topped with a gin and tonic granita and the effect was like a palate cleanser and delicious fresh seafood in one. The garnish you can see in the picture is an oyster leaf and it really does taste strongly of oysters, I was amazed!

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The Iberico pork was an absolute treat; melt in the mouth tender and served with delicious heritage carrots. I would highly recommend trying out a side of the creamy mash; I’m sure there are ridiculous amounts of butter in it, but it is SO worth it! The Pinot Noir was the first wine I’d tried from Uruguay and was probably my favourite wine of the evening; fruity but subtle enough not to overpower the pork.

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Crème Catalans I have tasted elsewhere have been quite heavy and topped with caramelised sugar; similar to a crème brulee. This one was light, creamy and paired with an exotic sorbet; exactly what I needed to finish off a fantastic meal.

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Bistro Deluxe by Paul Tamburrini is not like any hotel restaurant I’ve been to before. Each dish was thoughtful, flavoursome and well-executed. A great addition to the Edinburgh restaurant scene!

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*I was invited as a guest to the Bistro Deluxe press dinner and did not pay for my meal

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