A perfect circle

seabass with potato rosti, cauliflower puree and salad

As an Edinburgh resident you either love or hate the month of August. Some locals make themselves scarce as the city’s population literally doubles for the internationally renowned Edinburgh International and Edinburgh Fringe Festivals. Others embrace it, and take pride in the fact that so many people have flocked to their city in the name of art.

Last night we sought temporary sanctuary before the madness at The Circle, who for the duration of the Festival, will be offering evening meals on a Thursday, Friday and Saturday. As a lover of both this establishment and Metropole, their sister venture in the Newington area, I couldn’t turn down an invite to eat there.

A well thought out menu made it difficult to choose what to eat. We pulled ourselves out of our predicament and opted to start with the cream of potato and leek soup (£3.95), served with crusty bread. A heart-warming dish, it was an excellent rendition of a British classic. On the other hand, I decided to start the evening with courgette, sweetcorn and chilli fritters, served with pea shoots and cumin yoghurt (£4.95). This was a delicious and light starter and one that I very much look forward to enjoying again.

Despite a fantastic selection of main meals, as is a bit of a theme with most menus I look at, I couldn’t see past the mussels on the main menu. Served in a shallot, garlic, parley and white wine sauce (£9.95), they were deliciously fresh and cooked perfectly. I also devoured the hand cut chips that accompanied the dish.

My dining partner enjoyed one of the daily specials, sea bass with a potato rosti and cauliflower puree (£8.20). A hallmark of good fish, the skin was crispy and the flavours of the rosti and puree complimented the dish perfectly. Keeping our thirst at bay was a large glass of Rioja Bianco (£6.95), and another of Coteaux de Languedoc (£7.65).

seabass with potato rosti, cauliflower puree and salad

You would think that two excellent starters and even better main dishes would mean that we were too full for dessert. Perhaps two desserts would have been a step too far, so we shared one, a vanilla panna cotta with mango and lime leaf compote (£3.50). This was exceptional – the texture of the panna cotta was perfect, partnered with a compote that was sweet and sour.

vanilla panna cotta

Dinner at The Circle was just as good as I thought it would be. Here’s hoping it will last long beyond the Festival.


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  • http://theheartbeatsfaster.blogspot.co.uk/ Louisa

    The food all looks delicious, and a very reasonable price which is always good! I always go for mussels too, they’re just so tempting. Might have to try this during the festival. It’s my first festival, and although I’m enjoying the atmosphere, I am not enjoying working until 7 in the morning at the nightclub where I work!

  • chiara

    7am! That sounds like a killer! Yeah, if you can you should definitely go along, the food is really lovely x

  • http://www.sailorjennie.com jennie may

    Oh my gosh, everything looks SO yummy! Made me super hungry but I definitely don’t want to eat my super boring looking sandwich now! xo