City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland


Average Rating:
Restaurant Photos
Iris restaurant interior
Restaurant profile
Edinburgh Area: 
New Town, Edinburgh
Serving times: 
Mon-Sun: 12:00-22:30
(0131) 220 2111
Restaurant Established: 

Contemporary cuisine particularly with range of meat, game, and fish dishes.

The Reviews


A restaurant at the top of its game

Reviewed by Euan Andrews

Friday, June 22, 2012 - 8:48pm

Three course lunch: £15.50
Served from

I love Thistle Street. This pleasant, narrow boulevard running parallel between George Street and Queen Street is filled with elegant boutique shops, snugly welcoming pubs and a nice selection of restaurants and takeaways. It feels a long way from the corporate tourism machine encroaching manically upon its immediate surroundings. It feels, in short, like a little street for the good people of Edinburgh.

Not long opened, Iris is around the midway point between Hanover Street and Frederick Street and counts Bon Vivant as one of its neighbours. M has visited Iris before and quietly raved about it, so I pay heed to her advice and we go to sample the lunch menu which extends all the way up till 6.30pm.

Arriving at 6pm, this rather unfortunately means the restaurant is deserted of other customers. This doesn’t stop us receiving a most warmly cordial greeting from our helpful and friendly waitress. Top marks go to Iris straight off for the service.

The dining room is spacious and long, possibly in need of more lighting if one isn’t sitting too close to a window. But that is my one tiny niggle for what turns out to be a restaurant at the top of its game. Lovely crusty bread, with a hint of malt, is presented with cool, unsalted butter and then our starters swiftly arrive.

M has mussels in a lemony broth, and these bivalves are big lads. Massive, plumptious mussels and good to see a finger bowl instantly present tableside. My hot sticky pork salad is more a stir fry with salad leaves as a garnishing but no less outstanding for that.

Mains continue with this exceptional form. M has lamb patties with a perfect hint of mint of bruschetta which come with colourfully pink beetroot coleslaw. I get the best plate of summer food one could hope for. Roast chicken breast with peas, pancetta and feta. It’s always a joy to be reminded of the simple perfection of great poultry meat, away from its currency as fast food staple and flesh potato, and this wonderful dish is a celebration of simplicity. Just perfect. All mains are served with either salad or potatoes.

There is little room left for dessert, but I’m always game so try the chocolate cheesecake with raspberry coulis. It defeats me. I give it a good go, but this richly decadent slab of chocolate wickedness is simply too much following the ample portions I’ve just received.

By this point, Iris has been steadily filling up and is a long way from the empty chamber we came into. Rightly so, as this is a restaurant deserving of a great reputation with which I can’t find any fault. As we leave, our waitress takes a second out from working the now busy floor to say she hopes to see us both again. She most certainly will.