#The sun has got his hat on/hip, hip, hip hooray/the sun has got his hat on/ and he’s coming out to play#
That little song remains lodged in my brain, tootling away on its jauntily melodic way, as I make my way around the sunbathed streets of Edinburgh, during this long-overdue period of sunshine. Today, my wanderings took me to Embo, which is just across the road from yesterday’s lunch spot, Bites.
Benefiting from having a few tables outside its front door, Embo seems to be doing a good trade. I quite liked the simple set-up inside, where there’s room for a good few folks to sit-in, in stylish wooden comfort.
Our attention soon turned to the menu, and once we’d chosen the intriguing sounding parsnip, ginger and lemon soup, we examined their deli counter for sandwich options. Their selection of fillings looked really good, with a nice range of cold meat and cheeses, as well as various salad mixes.
Having taken this in, I ended up opting for one of their set wraps, from the board. The “veggie” comprised goat’s cheese, roasted vegetables, pesto and sun-dried tomatoes. Gary opted for the “Mexican”, featuring chicken, jalapenos, and avocado, amongst other things, on a multi-seed roll. The cost us each £5.70, which seemed quite steep, particularly in comparison with the other shops in the district.
Once we’d walked up the hill back to our place of business, we contemplated our selections. My wrap had been lightly toasted and was still nice and warm when I bit into it. The overwhelming flavour came from the goat’s cheese, which was tangy, strong and pleasing, but there needed to be stronger flavour from the accompanying vegetables or the pesto, to balance things a little more elegantly.
The soup was good, but not completely satisfying. I have good days and bad days with parsnips, and while I liked the consistency of this smooth soup, and it had good parsnip flavour in abundance, I’m not convinced the flavour combination worked. Perhaps it was the balance, again, that wasn’t quite right, but whatever the case, it didn’t fill me full of joy-joy feelings.
So Embo didn’t quite hit the mark, for me. I like their ideas, but the balance of the dishes isn’t quite there, and I don’t think that the quality on offer justifies the significantly higher price-tag than some of the similar offerings from their near neighbours. It strikes me more as a place to sit-in for a relaxing hour (the side salad that comes with their wraps when you sit-in looked quite impressive), rather than grab a quick take-out.
Blythe scores Embo:
3/5 for food
3/5 for presentation
3/5 for service
3.5/5 for setting
giving an overall 12.5/20
Today’s questers were: Gary, Blythe
We ate: parsnip, ginger and lemon soup (2); veggie wrap; Mexican roll
We drank: in the sunshine
We wore: Belstaff jacket, black travel suit
Total bill: £11.40