The moment we heard the loud sizzle coming from the open grill, we knew we were in for a steak treat. We rushed up to the counter, with cameras poised to try to capture the moment – the meat crackling and hissing away on the hot surface, the smells of caramelised char wafting over us and the chef grinning patiently whilst still keeping an eye on the steaks cooking away.
That would be a scene on a media night at any restaurant – the cameras, the bloggers, the photographs. Steaks are optional!
I was invited to host a media night (bloggers and social media influencers) on behalf of the new Steakhouse and Whisky bar Rib-Aye, located on Assembly Street, Leith.
Rib-Aye Steakhouse and Whisky Bar specialises in meat (vegans and vegetarians might not want to make a booking!) and serves up the very best of Scottish beef, venison and pork. The steaks are all matured on the bone, in-house in their large walk-in cold room and age between 25-48 days. You can also choose from a variety of whiskies (I think they have over 60 different whiskies available at the moment, and the collection is growing), wines and local beers.
The restaurant is large, a 60 seater and the perfect spot for large groups or an intimate table for 2. It has its own snug area with a large open roaring fire and the bar area just as you walk in the door.
Having eaten at Rib-Aye a few times, I was very aware of their menu and knew that the food was delicious having already dined on T-Bone and Rump Steaks, eaten my fill during their Unlimited Chicken Wing Special, and swigged more than a few cocktails.
On arrival we were all welcomed with a Prosecco cocktail with special extra large non-alcoholic cocktails available for the drivers on the night. We meandered through the bar, warmed ourselves by the fire in the snug before being seated close to the open grill in the restaurant.
For starters we were presented with a Charcuterie platter, sampling dishes from the menu. The Fillet Tartare served with cornichon, green herb, sea salt & black pepper aioli was delightful; the perfectly seasoned beef popped with flavour made even more perfect when scooped up with the aioli.
The House Smoked Venison Haunch Carpaccio served with house pickle is by far my favourite. Soft tender perfectly pink slices accompanied by the crunch of the pickle makes me very happy.
The Foie Gras Mousseline served with a wafer thin cracker oatcake was my least favourite, not because it wasn’t lovely but only because I’m not a fan of pate/mousse/foie gras. I did taste it though and it was smooth and creamy with an exceptional homebaked oatcake.
This was served up with a local brew, Campervan Stout – Mutiny on the Bounty. It matched the meatiness of this platter cutting through with flavours of coffee and chocolate with subtle hints of vanilla. Great match!
Next up was the French Onion and Oxtail Soup that was rich and indulgent and when matched with the Smokehead Whisky took this to another level. Who would have thought that soup and whisky would work!
Our mains were of course Ribeye Steaks cooked a nice pink medium rare. Juicy, tender and 8oz’s of the best Scottish beef around. Watching them being cooked by Chef Grant on the open grill was fabulous and was lovely to see them delivered to our table straight from the grill.
Alongside the steak came a showcase of some of the sauces and sides available on the menu. We had truffle butter, garlic butter, chimichurri sauce, pepper sauce, blue cheese sauce and bernais. For sides we had roasted sweet potato, thrice cooked crispy fat duck chips, beer battered onion rings, toasted and roasted mushrooms, haggis and lamb croquettes and nero cabbage & bacon.
I tucked into the chips which were so tasty and crispy, the ginormous onion rings were lightly coated and well seasoned and the haggis and lamb croquettes were a meal on their own, but so delicious you couldn’t resist. Nothing like meat with meat!
I always go for blue cheese sauce and this was no exception but I also tucked into the chimichuri just to add a spicy flavour to a few mouthfuls. Our main was accompanied by a very enjoyable rich dark smooth Chilean red wine, Kidia Gran Reserva Carmenere.
We were all so full by the time the cheese platters were served but we still managed to squeeze in a couple of mouthfuls as the plates of cheese, chutney and oatcakes just looked to irresistible to pass up. Cheeses were Blue Murder, Morangie brie and Scottish goats cheese served with homemade chutney.
I love this new steakhouse but most importantly, they are working hard to helping those less fortunate in our communities. They are also part of Cooking Up a Storm (which was started and continues in their sister restaurant, The Kilted Lobster) whereby all profits made at Rib-Aye are gifted back to Cooking Up a Storm which provides meals for those less fortunate, those facing financial difficulties or isolation; provides help training young people who are looking to work in hospitality and offers opportunities to those that need a pathway back to work.
If you love a good steak, if you are a meat eater, this is the place to come. The staff are friendly. Its well worth a visit and a repeat custom. These guys know what they are doing and the cherry on the cake is that in the end, its all for a good cause.
Many thanks to the following people for coming along:
My Spoon Award : Gold