- Telephone 0131 557 1600
- Seasonal times Open seven days during the Edinburgh Festival.
- Food served Mon–Thu noon–2.30pm, 5.30–10pm; Fri/Sat noon–3pm, 5.30–10.30pm. Closed Sun.
- Pre-theatre times Mon–Sat 5.30–7pm
- Average price £12.90 (set lunch); £24 (evening meal)
- Pre-theatre price £13.90
- Website www.lescargotbleu.co.uk
This review is taken from the current (2015) edition.
Dynamic couple Frederic Berkmiller and Betty Jourjon are the patrons and creative force behind L’Escargot Bleu (and sister L’Escargot Blanc). Their particular take on the classic French bistro fizzes with quirky Gallic charm. A handsome dining room with vintage posters and big windows provides a suitable backdrop to bold cooking served up joyfully by mostly native French staff. A glance at the menu confirms a serious kitchen underpinning the fun – there are snails from Barra with crab bisque, or homemade sausages, terrines and boudin. Berkmiller, also lead chef, clearly has a vital engagement with his produce and his intrepid ‘whole hog’ approach previously brought notoriety in the delicious form of horse meat tartare. Beef is a highlight, offered in a variety of ways and breeds: eye-popping rib-eye steak of Highland Wagyu (rich, tender and expertly cooked) or, if you are looking for a seriously good time, a Shorthorn côte de boeuf for two. Puddings are worth a look too, with tarte tatin and crème brûlée being exemplars of French classics that are reproduced here with genuine love and care.
- High point: Creative bistro cooking is elevated by some serious sourcing
- Low point: Side dishes could play a more considered supporting role
- Notable dish: Le Boudin Noir fait maison - duck's blood pudding made in house
- Private dining: Up to 16 covers
- Provides: Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Pre-theatre menu
- Capacity: 55
- Largest group: 55 / 16
- Open since: 2009
- Number of wines sold by the glass: 16
- House wine: £17.90 per bottle
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