City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Maison Bleue


Average Rating:
4
Restaurant Photos
Maison Bleue front
Restaurant profile
Edinburgh Area: 
Grassmarket
Edinburgh Area: 
Old Town Edinburgh
Serving times: 
7 days noon till late
Telephone: 
(0131) 226 1900
Restaurant Established: 
98

Atmospheric restaurant specialising in French and North African cooking using Scottish ingredients.


The Reviews

4

Excellent value and superb food in this atmospheric French/Moroccan restaurant with a Scottish twist

Reviewed by Irene Brown

Wednesday, November 21, 2012 - 10:34am

As we sat on the soft buckskin chairs at plain scrubbed wooden tables under subdued candles lights in the stone walled space that is Maison Bleue, I wondered why I’d never paid a visit to this atmospheric restaurant before. It was only when I went up the ancient winding stone staircase that the space started to feel familiar. I recalled it in its previous incarnation of Kinnell’s tea and coffee shop where real black tea was flavoured with delights like passion fruit or mango and served with Ferguson’s gorgeous Scottish chocolates. Bliss!

But back to the present! We were lunching on Maison Bleue’s incredible deal of two courses for £8.95 as part of this year’s £10 challenge by Edinburgh Guide.

The restaurant specialises in French and North African cooking using Scottish ingredients and this special lunch and pre-theatre menu offers four choices per course and a choice from four accompanying side dishes – pommes châteax, ratatouille of vegetables, mousseline of mash and salade vert that range in price from £2.50 to £3.50.

Sticking to the budget, we opted out of sides. My spinach soup was flavoursome yet delicate and there was enough of the lovely accompanying fresh bread served before the meal to enjoy with it. K. opted for the deep fried haggis balls that were served with clapshot potatoes and a whisky jus but was unsure if the spiciness was in the sauce or the haggis, though still found it enjoyable.

This dish ticked all the boxes for Scottishness, though it has to be said that ‘deep fried’ is the least appealing of these. H. had the seafood millefeuille that was served with white wine, cream, dill, fennel seeds and lemon zest. The pastry was light and the fish and sauce reported as delicious. Good choices all round!

Our main courses came served in stylish dishes that are part dish, part plate which was especially practical for my choice of pan fried sea bream fillet in a mussel and clam tomato broth. An unsolicited spoon appeared so not a drop of the delicious red liquid was wasted.

Poulet au Boursin, which is a generous roasted chicken served with a Boursin cheese based sauce, came served with green beans and cherry tomatoes, so a side dish in this case would have been superfluous.

Lamb au Ras al Hanout, a slow roasted Moroccan spiced lamb shoulder served with cumin and onion potatoes was the choice of H. who found it beautifully cooked and served. Delish!

We all found our meat of choice tender and beautifully cooked and in impressively generous portions.

The offer of puddings is always tempting but on our visit the choice of strawberry cheesecake, sticky toffee pudding or a Mellis cheeseboard wasn’t enough to tempt until the words ‘crème brulée’ and ‘search for the perfect’ were uttered.

It hadn’t strictly speaking been available, but our waiter told us some was being prepared for the evening and if it was ready, a couple of portions were ours.

As we had rushed things, the crème brulée was a bit soft and warm but delightfully light and delicious with the perfect toffee-hammer-smashable topping.

Again, the portions were generous as we shared two between three with no one (I hope!) feeling deprived.

By the nature of the restaurant being in such an old building, there is no disabled toilet and difficult access up the winding stairs. However, I am told that the neighbouring Bow Bar can be used if needed.

This was a delightful lunching experience that left nobody feeling in the least ‘bleue’ and one that will certainly be repeated.