There aren’t many great seafood restaurants in Edinburgh and there certainly is a very limited number of restaurants that serve Scottish Seafood. Fortunately for us seafood lovers you can be guaranteed that when dining at the Kilted Lobster in Stockbridge, you’ll be gorging yourself on the very best of sustainable Scottish Seafood, served with locally sourced, in season ingredients prepared fresh daily.
Scotland’s larder has a wonderful supply of salmon, halibut, sea bass, monkfish, lobster, langoustine, scallops, cockles, mussels and oysters. Scotland has a diverse range of seafood plucked from our cold clear seas and lochs; so with all this on our doorstep, I often find it very difficult to get my head around why many restaurants in Scotland do not serve Scottish Seafood!
We headed to the Kilted Lobster for a family celebration. The restaurant is small and intimate but easily sits 24 people comfortably. The interior reflects the seafood theme with aqua blue tables and chairs; and paintings and wall art of fish and lobsters. Its not ostentatious, rather quirky with a lovely ambiance.
We started off with some of my favourite wine, Picpoul De Pinet. It’s elegant, crisp and delicate; refreshingly dry with citrus and green notes on the nose and palate. Ideally paired with seafood.
Before we had all finished perusing the menu and changing our minds several times; lovely plates of amuse bush arrived. Little bite sized nibbles including crab bellini’s and haggis bon bons.
As always, I had the scallops. These are Isle of Mull Scallops with a wee fishcake served with tarragon creme fraiche.
Five large plump silky smooth scallops cooked to absolute perfection. The wee fishcake was a nice touch giving the dish a wee bit of a crunch. The tarragon creme fraiche was light with just a hint of tarragon; the light notes of aniseed and vanilla not overpowering the dish.
Continuing with the starters, the Calamari Fritte with chipotle aioli was a massive hit. I have never had more delicious calamari than here. It’s sliced thin, the batter is as light as a feather but coats the rings generously.
Squeeze the lemon over the calamari then use the calamari rings to scoop up the smoky chipotle aioli. A minute or so later you’ll be wishing you had ordered another portion.
I am sure people just order the Rumbledethumps because of the name and perhaps they have no idea what they are ordering. These are the Morangie Brie Rumbledethumps and are perfect for vegetarians. A large brie cheese potato cake served with tomato jam.
This is also a good time to mention that Kilted Lobster also cater for gluten freebies, vegetarians and they do have meat dishes on their menu. So it’s not just seafood.
A few at our table ordered the Organic Belly Pork with Stornoway black pudding and potato croquette with red sticky cabbage. I only managed to get one photograph before all plates were wolfed down. The sticky red cabbage complimented the soft tender pork and the crackling on top was superb as only pork crackling can be.
I went for the lobster of course! You can’t go to the Kilted Lobster and not have lobster. This is the half lobster, served with confit sweet potato, caramelised green beans and crayfish butter.
I think a lot of people are scared to order lobster as they have no idea how to eat it! Our education (well mine certainly) on how to eat a lobster is based on watching movies where they deliver the lobster crackers and other strange implements to your table and you watch was the lobster claw flies over to the other side of the restaurant and the diner is left in tears and everyone else is laughing. Luckily for us, the Kilted Lobster prepare and plate up the lobster for you. The soft, sweet succulent meat is all pulled out and ready for your fork. All you have to do is tuck in.
Onto dessert and the Kilted Lobster steals my Dessert Spoon Award for 2017. Their Pistachio Panna Cotta was outstanding. The plate was oh so pretty (including the plate itself) with this beautiful cream wobble perfect dome of creamy heaven, sprinkled with finely chopped pistachio nuts and served with two shortbread biscuits dusted with fine sugar and a whole chocolate spoon.
The panna cotta itself was wonderful. On the first spoonful, the creamy dome just gave in and the panna cotta peeled itself away from its its form. A slight wobble as it sprang back into place ready for the next spoonful. Gosh it was good!
Then came the Almond and White Chocolate Cheesecake. You’d expect white chocolate to be quite sweet but this isn’t at all. It tastes of white chocolate and the almond blends well with it. The base is biscuit but very light. You’ll be scraping the plate looking for any morsels that are left!
The staff at the Kilted Lobster are very attentive without being overbearing and nothing is too much hassle. They are extremely accommodating for those with allergies and intolerance’s (we had two coeliacs on our table).
I do love this wee restaurant nestled in Stockbridge. They try hard and they get it right; plus they do amazing work in the community, closing every Tuesday night to the general public but opening their doors to vulnerable people in our communities, providing 3 course complimentary dining. They also run workshops teaching young kids and single parent families etc how to cook on a budget; do lots of work experience and train tomorrows chefs today. So every time you dine here, the profits go back into our communities. What a wonderful gift to give.
Kilted Lobster, 112 St Stephen Street, Edinburgh
Tel : 0131 2206677 www.kiltedlobster.com
My Spoon Award : Tartan