French Restaurants in Edinburgh
1. Rhubarb, Prestonfield Hotel Scottish restaurant in Edinburgh Priestfield Rd - EH16
In the same stable as Edinburgh’s famous Witchery, James Thomson’s lavishly decorated hotel sits in 20 acres near Arthur’s Seat and its rococo interior “never fails to please for a romantic occasion”. The food is not centre stage, but is consistently well-rated too, with menu options including an à la carte menu, three-course ‘fine dining’ option and afternoon tea.
2. La Garrigue French restaurant in Edinburgh 31 Jeffrey St - EH1
Since 2001, Jean-Michel Gauffre’s bistro has been a “friendly and welcoming” feature of the Old Town, serving a “delightful southern French/Mediterranean menu, and in particular the authentic cuisine of Languedoc” with “regional wines” to match.
3. Café Marlayne French restaurant in Edinburgh 1 Thistle Street - EH2
“A lovely little place” – “the sort of bistro you would like to have in your neighbourhood”, with “a very nice menu of French dishes and excellent service”. It’s also “very cheap at lunchtime and reasonable in the evening, especially for central Edinburgh”.
4. L’Escargot Bleu French restaurant in Edinburgh 56 Broughton St - EH1
“Like a Gallic hug”, chef-patron Fred Berkmiller’s “properly sourced old-school French cuisine” comes packaged with “Gallic good humour, impeccable service and quirky decoration in this wonderfully authentic restaurant”, “now with new wine bar underneath”. Sadly, its nearby sibling L’Escargot Blanc closed down last year after 18 years.
5. 21212 British, Modern restaurant in Edinburgh 3 Royal Ter - EH7
Paul Kitching’s “wonderfully exciting food” has been a highlight of Edinburgh’s dining scene for almost 15 years, served in the signature ‘formation’ of his restaurant’s name: a choice of 2 starters followed by 1 soup, a choice of 2 mains, 1 cheese and 2 desserts, the line-up changing every week. There’s a “beautifully decorated and elegant drawing room for pre- and post-dinner drinks”.
6. Café St-Honoré French restaurant in Edinburgh 34 NW Thistle Street Ln - EH2
“Tucked away in a back street off George Street” you’ll find a little corner of “Left Bank Paris preserved en gelée” – serving “divine French bistro food” that’s “just right for a romantic tryst”. “This long standing restaurant continues to show others that great ingredients well prepared shine through”, while demonstrating “outstanding commitment to local small suppliers”.
7. New Chapter Scottish restaurant in Edinburgh 18 Eyre Pl. - EH3
This “popular” local from chef Maciej Szymik gives seasonal Scottish produce a modern European twist, earning general all-round approval. There’s also a spin-off brasserie in the West End: Otro.
8. The Walnut British, Modern restaurant in Edinburgh 9 Croall Place - EH7
2021 Review: This “real gem” on the road to Leith – “family-run with flair and passion” – “uses unusual cuts of locally sourced meats and seasonal produce to keep the cost of lunch to £10”. It’s “intimate and cosy, but on a hot summer’s day, sitting outside sipping wine and eating the amazing fresh food the kitchen sends out is a real treat”.
9. The Rabbit Hole British, Modern restaurant in Edinburgh 11 Roseneath Street - EH9
2022 Review: “Good all round” – this popular and well-priced Marchmont venue keeps a local crowd happy with the French-accented dishes sent out by its owner-chefs, a Sicilian/Canadian couple who live nearby. A proper two-course lunch costs under £20, which adds to the appeal.
10. Restaurant Martin Wishart French restaurant in Edinburgh 54 The Shore - EH6
“Loved it! Everything is just right” at Martin Wishart’s harbourside flagship: one of the city’s most accoladed culinary destinations, where his menus of “Frenchified Scottish ingredients” offer “decadent luxury” in “the cool, gentrified environs” of the Leith waterfront. “Every bit as good as the first time I came nearly 20 years ago”, it’s held a “Michelin star for 20 years for a reason”. It might be “slightly hushed and reverential for my (London!) tastes, but it totally deserves its accolades!”
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