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The Kitchin

78 Commercial Quay, Edinburgh, United Kingdom, EH66LX
Critics Review 17/20
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About The Kitchin

The Restaurant opened in 2006 by husband and wife team Tom & Michaela Kitchin on Edinburgh’s stylish waterfront.

Dining at The Kitchin is relaxed but welcoming with the food in focus.The passion of Tom and Michaela, Philippe and Maitre d’ Sylvain and their entire Kitchin team shine through in what they deliver; quality and consistency.

Awarded a Michelin star in January 2007, six months after opening, Tom Kitchin is constantly looking at exciting ways of improving and reinventing the Set lunch menu, Tasting and À la carte menus, with seasonal menus by being true to the local produce. Honest and simple: FROM NATURE TO PLATE.

Cuisine: Scottish, Fine Dining, Michelin Star, Vegetarian, Tasting Menu
Dress Code: Smart Casual
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£ £ £ £ £

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Critics Review
Review by Andy Hayler
17/20
Tom Kitchin trained at Gleneagles but also at Louis XV under Frank Cerruti, who is one of the great chefs of France (Alain Ducasse's name may be over the door, but Frank Cerruti was the one that delivered the third star at Louis XIV). The Kitchin opened in June 2006 in Leith, formerly the docks area of Edinburgh and where a couple of decades ago no sane person would wander around alone at night unless heavily armed. Now the area has been redeveloped and is full of trendy bars and restaurants. The restaurant received a Michelin star in the 2007 guide which it has held each year since. There is a bar area to the right as you enter, and a short corridor attractively framed by wine display cabinets. The dining room itself has rather dark decor, with dark green walls and grey carpet, but the lighting on each table is well directed, and the highlight is a large window into the kitchen, so diners can see the chefs in action (11 this evening for 45 covers). The atmosphere in the dining room is informal, with no tablecloths and fairly basic tables with what appeared to be laminate tops; however, the chairs were comfortable, a feature that a surprising number of restaurants overlook. The wine list is far from kindly priced at the non-investment banking end of the list. The South African Viognier The Foundry 2007 was £43 for a wine that can be bought in shops for £11, Mas de Daumas Gassac 2008 white was £78 compared to a retail price of around £23, Cos d’Estournel 1998 was a hefty £230 for a wine that you can pick up for around £64, yet at the upper end of the list Lafite Rothschild 1994 was £570 for a wine that costs this much to buy retail. As we looked at the menu some nibbles appeared: anchovy sticks, vegetable crisps (which were nicely seasoned) and pleasant cheese goujeres.(16/20). The tasting menu cost £65, with main courses such as grouse at £33 and halibut at £30. Local ingredients are a feature of the cooking, and Scotland is blessed with some lovely produce. We were shown a board of game comprising: black grouse (very rare: twice the size of normal grouse), ptarmigan, grouse and teal to choose from. Breads are not made in the kitchen but are supplied exclusively to the restaurant by a local Turkish baker. The selection was of rolls of onion bread, black olive, sourdough, rustic white, granary bread and oat bread. Olive bread lacked much olive taste though had pleasant texture, tomato bread had reasonable tomato taste but its texture was a little chewy, while other breads such as the white were fine (15/20 overall). An amuse-bouche of mushroom consommé with diced vegetables and chicken was clear and had nice depth of flavour (15/20). To begin with I had roasted bone marrow stuffed with girolles and snails and garnished with a fried quail egg; this was very good indeed, carefully seasoned (17/20). My wife ate cooked razor clam served in its shell and stuffed with assorted vegetables and a lemon confit. This was a stunning dish, with clever flavouring from anchovies and finely diced chorizo as well as beautifully cooked clam (18/20). Next was a pumpkin soup with scallops and bacon, with grated pumpkin seeds. The scallops themselves were superb, sweet and of very high quality, though the soup itself was merely very good (17/20 overall, but the scallops were top drawer). Ptarmigan (a relative of grouse) and celeriac puree followed. Ptarmigan eat plenty of blueberries at this time of year amongst their diet of seeds and insects, and tastes rather like grouse, the meat tender and delicious, served with some of the cooking juices (17/20). Halibut was crisp on the outside, moist inside and topped with lightly cooked shaved fennel, on a bed of cocoa beans with diced vegetables and a shellfish-flavoured pesto sauce (17/20). Beef Wellington was a lovely rendition of this classic, the Scottish beef excellent, the pastry made from scratch in the kitchen, the whole dish a joy to eat (18/20). Valrhona tart with Perthshire raspberries and mint chocolate chip ice cream had very good quality raspberries, a pleasant rather than dazzling base, but was a most enjoyable dish (16/20). Pistachio soufflé had good pistachio taste and was light in texture, served on the side with some really excellent pistachio ice cream (17/20, but the ice cream was even better than this). Service was terrific all evening, led by a French maitre d’ who had spent several years at Michel Bras; all the waiters we encountered were attentive and friendly. Petit fours consisted of pistachio financier (which was rather hard), vanilla and almond chocolate and a moist rosemary jelly (15/20 overall). The overall bill, with a bottle of Chateau Musar and a couple of other glasses of wine, came to £126 a head. Though not cheap, this did not seem unreasonable given the superb produce used and the high degree of skill on display in the kitchen.
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Visited On Friday, 17 May 2013

We had a wonderful meal,service was amazing and I have recommended to friends they book Chef's land and sea surprise tasting menu. I was delighted when Tom welcomed us on arrival. We were impressed by the hard work of staff under Tom's supervision. The food they produced was wonderful and all the wine a perfect compliment to the food.

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Visited On Wednesday, 15 May 2013

First visit for me - return visit for my wife who had lunch with you with one of our daughters, and insisted on taking me (or was it the other way around?) - and I was most impressed

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Visited On Friday, 17 May 2013

Lunched here several times but this was our first time for dinner. Excellent as always!

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Visited On Friday, 17 May 2013

For the most part we had an enjoyable experience and the food was very good. The wines chosen by the sommelier to accompany the set lunch were excellent. We had one issue, which rather spoiled things. Two of our small party chose the souffle for dessert. When it arrived the souffle was not cooked through. The middle was not cooked at all. I mentioned it to staff and they immediately offered to replace them with freshly made souffles. I accepted the offer, my wife did not. When the replacement came it too was not cooked in the middle. The free coffee and petits fours we received really did not compensate for what was really a sub-standard dish. This detracted from my enjoyment of the afternoon, which was a pity because it would otherwise have been wonderful. We will return to Australia a little bit disappointed.

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Visited On Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Outstanding, from staff meeting us from taxi drop off with umbrella to the obvious knowledge of what we were served. We had the taster menu with matching wine,which though expensive, was absolute theatre and and as we were there all night the overall experience was worth it.

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Visited On Thursday, 16 May 2013

We have dined at some of the finest restaurants in the country but The Kitchen surpassed them all. The whole event was a fantastic experience, food prepared, cooked and presented to perfection, superb wines and a friendly, courteous, highly attentive but discrete staff. Thank you to all.

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Visited On Thursday, 16 May 2013

All excellent-particularly valued the attentive but not over fussy service.Only small quibble was the short delay before our glasses of wine arrived to complement our main courses.We started otherwise our main course would have gone cold.However,there was an apology and it was soon rectified.

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Visited On Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Thank you for another memorable visit to The Kitchin. The staff were brilliant, despite the menu selection not being lest swift than was ideal. It was my mother's eighty-something birthday and she, my sister and I were looked after in a very friendly, effective and welcoming fashion, from front of house, to the waiters and the sommelier. I look forward to my next visit – when I can get a table! Thank you.

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Visited On Friday, 17 May 2013

This was our first visit to The Kitchin and we were impressed by the experience. The service provided was outstanding - the staff could not have been more helpful. The food was exceptional although my husband who is not a big wine drinker would have preferred a less expensive option to have been provided perhaps a house wine.

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Visited On Thursday, 16 May 2013

Fabulous evening, from the moment we entered the restaurant. Staff were welcoming and most profesional, a slick operation!! We decided on the taster menu and wine to compliment. Every course was delicious, possibly the razor clams "spoots" was my favourite or maybe the shellfish rockpool.Really fantastic food and so fresh, compliments to the chef!! Have raved about "The Kitchen" experience to family and friends.

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Visited On Tuesday, 14 May 2013

We came for the Land and Sea Tasting Menu andevery element was even better than we hoped! The food was interesting, special and delicious. Staff were very knowledgable and attentive and the evening as a whole was thoroughly enjoyable. We were also very excited to have a brief chat with Tom in the bar beforehand as well as seeing him in the kitchen during the meal. Can't recommend The Kitchin highly enough and can't wait to return!

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Visited On Thursday, 16 May 2013

An excellent evening the food, service wine flight and atmosphere were all of the highest order.

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Visited On Thursday, 16 May 2013

My wife and I had a Brilliant lunch, nothing was too much trouble and despite being "fitted in" at the last moment we were not rushed in any way. It was all topped off by meeting the man him self on our way in. Wow.

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Visited On Friday, 17 May 2013

The best, deserves 2 stars

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Visited On Friday, 17 May 2013

As a birthday lunch for my husband we had an amazing time from start to finish, the staff were truly lovely and very attentive. The food was outstanding, my taste buds are tingling and a huge smile on my face at the memory. A truly wonderful experience. We cannot wait to return.

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Visited On Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Outstanding, my party of four dined in three separate one star michelen restaurants in a four day period all over Scotland and the Kitchen was head and shoulders above the other two in all aspects. One of our party is a chef who has worked with Japanese and European kitchen brigades with michelen stars, and is currently working in Australia gaining experience in restaurants with hats, I and my wife have also worked and owned hotels, so I believe our judgment to be correct based on years of experience in the hospitality industry . I don't think it will be long before the Kitchen will be awarded an other star, well done to all the staff for the countless unsociable hours that are put in and endured to make the Kitchen what it is, an outstanding and memobarable experience

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Visited On Thursday, 16 May 2013

The Kichen is absolutely wonderful, if a bit pricy. I cringe at saying that as I had been warned about the prices, frankly that's the only thing that would keep me from dining there regularly. We both had fish and could not be more impressed with the freshness, flavor and welcoming from the staff. A truly lovely meal!

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Visited On Tuesday, 14 May 2013

We really enjoyed our meal with you, everything tasted fresh and delicious. We will definitely come back again. Just marked you down for one minor detail, it was maybe just a tiny bit too dark in the restaurant. Your staff were attentive and pleasant. Loved being able to see the chefs working in the kitchen and made it special that Tom Kitchin was cooking too :-)

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Visited On Thursday, 16 May 2013

The food is very good but the wine is excessively expensive. I ordered two glasses of white, £12.00 each, and a bottle of Chilean red which I thought was £22.00 but was £42.00 on the bill. There are many excellent restaurants which provide good wines which are less expensive.

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Visited On Thursday, 16 May 2013

Would definitely go again (and soon!). My partner and I were very impressed with our delicious meal. The service was attentive and the sommelier's recommendation went down a treat! Thank you!

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Visited On Wednesday, 15 May 2013

We both thoroughly enjoyed our evening at The Kitchin. Thank you for a wonderful experience and for making us try dishes that were definitely out of our "comfort zone"!! Many thanks again. Kind regards, Ian and Grace Arbuckle, Lower Luthrie, Cupar.

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Visited On Thursday, 16 May 2013

All great thanks. Already rather pricey for most of us and not sure that I like being offered "specials" at a substantial supplement would be my only gentle criticism. My "no" was accepted quite happily though.

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Visited On Tuesday, 14 May 2013

The food was so delicious, I can't wait to go back.

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Visited On Wednesday, 15 May 2013

We had a very nice evening

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Visited On Wednesday, 15 May 2013

My wife and myself thoroughly enjoyed our lunch - first class.

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