“A very special place” – Tom Kitchin is often seen in the kitchen of his “friendly” Leith flagship, and it shows in the “perfect execution” of “brilliant and passionate” cuisine that “takes full advantage of the great product available on his doorstep”; it’s well “worth the wait for a table”.
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“Quaintly, for [Tom] Kitchin it is still all about the food”, says the critic of a chef who still sees his job as cooking, rather than marketing. He visits Kitchin’s restaurant “in Leith's dockyards, [where] container ships have been replaced by cavernous restaurant space, most of it empty and going nowhere”… But entering The Kitchin you exclaim: ‘Oh, so this is where the life has been hiding.’” This is, he concludes, a “great” restaurant, not least becaus it offers “what must be Britain's best set lunch for under £25”.
AA Gill (19th October 2009)
The critic has nothing but praise for Tom Kitchin’s Edinburgh restaurant. He instantly takes to the “amiable room” which “glows with bonhomie” and the menu elicits the “intense joy of unforced, ingredient-led innovation and common sense.” Topped with “informed and attentive” service, he deems this “the best and most agreeable dinner I’ve eaten all year”.
Jay Rayner (28th May 2008)
The critic ventures to Auld Reekie to visit the “not exactly… elegant” Leith restaurant, whose chef – the eponymous Mr Kitchin – trained under Pierre Koffmann. Although it’s a Michelin-starred joint, “[n]obody had come here to worship. They had come here to eat”. The critic likes what he tastes, from the menu of a man whose style is “to take the obvious and, by sheer strength of execution, give you more than you expected”.
Mark Palmer (2nd July 2007)
Tom Kitchin “has already picked up a Michelin star, making him the youngest Scotsman to do so”. Well, was it justified? That’s the question that this perplexing review never really answers. On the one hand 7/10 seems a modest rating for a place that’s so quickly been blessed by Michelin, and some implications are on the negative side. But the review ends on an un-ambiguously upbeat note.