Checking out the Christmas menu at Harvey Nichols Edinburgh.
In my latest Rosie Makes, I spoke about my love of seasonal baking at this time of year; maybe I’m getting old, but for me these days one of the best things about Christmas – festive time spent with family aside – is another ‘F’: food. I absolutely love to cook as well as bake, and though I’m a total homebird there’s something extra special about eating out at this time of year, when menus are filled with tempting Christmas fare. So on a dreich December afternoon, the thought of sampling Harvey Nichols’ festive menu at their Forth Floor Restaurant was enough to tempt me out into the bitter cold and driving sleet.
The Forth Floor – not a typo, it really does look over the Firth of Forth, across to the homeland – was decked out in its seasonal finery, and with the view across Edinburgh’s twinkling lights I was definitely feeling festive. Often when you’re eating out, especially at this time of year, inventive veggie options can seem a little thin on the ground. I was delighted to see some creative veggie choices on the Forth Floor Restaurant’s menu and couldn’t wait to sample them.
To start, I had the white onion and parmesan velouté, which was gorgeously smooth and deliciously tangy. It was accompanied by an amaretto chantilly cream and almond crumb, which added sweetness and depth of flavour to the dish. If only I could get so much flavour into my soups, as well as getting them that smooth! Kevin opted for the maple roast hot smoked salmon, which was nestled atop a Waldorf salad – practically saintly compared to my soup!
If there’s one Christmas flavour that I love – and often only seem to have at this time of year – it’s chestnut, which accompanied smoked cheddar in a deliciously creamy risotto for my main. I’m feeling inspired to incorporate it into bakes after my savoury sampling! Sweet chestnut and candied pear perfectly balanced the smokiness, while the crispy trompette mushrooms added texture. I hear the braised beef shin was delicious too – it came with cep purée, crispy pancetta bacon, fondant potato, stuffed mushroom and thyme jus. We both had the festive sides and the sprouts (I love them, ok?!) were cooked to perfection.
After all that yumminess there was barely space for pud, but when I saw the options I had to find some room. The chocolate pear was calling my name and it certainly didn’t disappoint: slow-cooked, it had the perfect amount of bite and a subtly chocolatey exterior. Accompanied by honey ice cream and wee pieces of ‘cinder toffee’, it was a real festive treat. The Forth Floor Christmas pud was delectable too, served with a generous pouring of brandy sauce. There was just enough room for the cutest petit fours: a teeny mince pie and chocolate truffle were the perfect end to our meal. Thanks for having me, Harvey Nichols!
Where’s your favourite festive menu? Have you dined on the Forth Floor before? Disclaimer: Harvey Nichols kindly treated me to lunch for the purposes of review. As ever, I never share anything I wouldn’t recommend a friend!