New seasons bring new foods which bring new menus. Hotel Du Vin Bistro recently launched their new Prixe Fixe menu and I can tell you, you’ll be met with heartiness and warmth not only from the staff but the food itself.
With excellent front of house staff and a sommelier to hand, service is a dream and every whim and need is attended to.
Sat in a cosy corner, we were soon spearing olives, selecting the fine charcuterie and wolfing down thick warm fresh bread.
This is where I apologise to the Sommelier. Although he visited our table a few times to help us select the best wines, we were too busy chatting and ended up choosing our own wine which might not have been the best paired with our chosen food, but from our point of view, delicious!
We choose what we liked, so TartanSpoonie Lotte opted for a Pinot Noir whilst I chose a Sancerre. Pinot Noir was a Santa Rita, Gran Hacienda from Aconcagua Valley, Chile – a light ruby coloured wine with fresh cherry and pure raspberry flavours on the nose, with soft spicy notes of cinnamon, mocha and earth; well balanced and vibrant.
The Sancerre was the Andre Neveu, Le Manoir from Loire, France. This wine has a zingy minerality and freshness, yet is full and rich on the palate with flavours of citrus fruit, apples and hints of summer herbs.
It’s a 3-4-3 menu (3 starters, 4 mains and 3 desserts choices to choose from).
Starters include Charred Grimsby Mackerel (I’m not a fan of mackerel) and TS Blooms of Coalville Ham Hock Terrine and the dish we both chose, the Warwickshire Truckle Cheese Fondue with ratte potatoes and Altamura sourdough.
And ooooo the cheese fondue is fabulous. A shallow dish of oozing cheesiness topped with mushrooms. Warwickshire Truckle is made by Fowlers Dairy to a traditional recipe for some 75 years. It has a creamy texture with a tangy flavour and melts like a dream.
The potatoes and the sourdough fingers are excellent dunkers and you’ll want to lick this bowl clean.
Two mains dishes appealed to us both namely the Pigs Cheeks and the Highland Game and Beetroot Pie. Other options were the Devon Crab cake or for vegetarians, the Broccoli and Cavolo Nero pasta.
Instantly I chose the Pigs Cheeks braised in Westons Capel Road Cider with potato, celeriac and grain mustard mash with roasted shallots. Absolutely unctuous. The cheeks melted before your cutlery went anywhere near it but I managed to scoop it up and devour it within minutes. The mash was too mustard-y for me but loved the roasted shallots. A winters dish that will warm any belly.
Lotte went with the Highland Game Venison and Beetroot Pie slow cooked with Freedoms Pils beer and topped with slices of Heritage Beetroot, served with fat cut chips.
This is a stunner! The dark purples, deep reds and oranges draw you in and you cannot wait to take a bite. The beetroot is truly tremendous – sweet with a little bite, it contrasts against the rich deep flavour of the venison. Fantastic dish.
Sides were tremendous too and a massive shout out for the lush green beans and more cheese from the Cauliflower Cheese!
The desserts listed tick the box for the cheese lovers with the Bosworth Ash Goats cheese with crispbread and chutney; for the chocolate lovers, the Valhrona Chocolate tart with Stratford Bees honey and crème fraiche and for the traditionalists, the Hudsons Farm Bramley Apple Crumble with vanilla ice cream.
We also had a look at the A La Carte menu and seen that they had a Mousse Au Chocolat with crème Chantilly. We thought we would be good and have this dessert to share, plus mousse is light and less filling with less calories?! Right?!!??
With eyes 50 times bigger than our bellies we made a very slight dent in the mousse. It was light and fluffy, chocolately and rather filling!
We paired our desserts with a Graham’s Tawny Port 10 yo and a Royal Tokaji Sherry.
Graham’s Tawny Port is a beautifully deep with almond and hazelnut aromas combined with notes of honey and figs. It’s packed with mellow, raisin fruit and fig flavours, with a long, luscious caramel-flavoured finish.
The Royal Tokaji I first tasted at Paul Tamburrini. I fell in love with it then and reinforced my love for it at Hotel Du Vin. It’s pale gold colour with delicate citrus and spicy aromas. Light and refreshing on the palate with hints of white peach and honey. It’s smooth, silky and crisp.
The Prixe Fixe menu is available on Saturdays before 7pm only with 2 courses for £18.95 and 3 courses for £21.95. Fabulous food at great prices in a wonderful city centre restaurant.
Hotel Du Vin, 11 Bristo Place, Edinburgh. www.hotelduvin.com
My Spoon Award : Gold Spoon 9/10