January 20, 2015 Closed, seafood, steak, Stockbridge 1 Comment

Crab

Crab

We occasionally get backed up with reviews. At the moment, we’re still running at a backlog of around two weeks, which is no bad thing. However, we occasionally let reviews slip through the net, for one reason or another. Such was the case with our original review of Bistro Moderne, following our visit back in March 2014.

That day we enjoyed a very good lunch as part of a day we spent launching an issue of The Istanbul Review, with noted Turkish writer Elif Shafak. Assembling the review after what was a very hectic day got lost to the winds, sadly, so I was glad to visit again to consider things again.

Cured stonebass

Cured stonebass

I was joined by Anna, a friend of longstanding who now lives in foreign lands. On her previous visit to Edinburgh, we’d lunched on these premises when they were home to Cafe Fish and had had a jolly fine time of it.

Bistro Moderne is Mark Greenaway’s take on the classic French style of less formal dining. It’s playing in the same space as the Galvin Brasserie, the nearby Purslane and Field in what we’ve come to call casual fine dining.

Steak and chip

Steak and chip

The interior is much the same as it was before. It’s a bank conversion that retains many of the original features. There’s an open kitchen and cocktail bar seating, but it retains quite a formal restaurant feel.

The menu is along “Auld Alliance” lines, with classic French dishes delivered with Scottish accent and produce. Seafood is to the fore and we both opted for that to start. I had the soft shell crab while Anna chose the cured stonebass. We followed with meaty mains of steak & “chip” and a venison haunch.

Venison

Venison

Starters arrived looking as bonnie as expected. My crab came with a light, foamy tartare sauce. The crab was crisp, light and made for a pleasing opener. Anna was very happy with her dish, too.

The venison also hit the spot very nicely, so it was double thumbs up from Anna. My steak was very good, accurately cooked and packed with flavour, but I wasn’t completely convinced by the single cuboid chip. It was crisp outside and fluffy inside, but its singularity just made the dish feel rather light on portion size.

Buche de noel

Buche de noel

We rounded things out with seasonal buche de noel (OK – maybe we’re running at a three week backlog) and an array of cheeses from Mellis, which were as excellent as you would expect.

Throughout, we took wine recommendations from the “our favourites” on the menu, which meant a really good albarino with starters and lovely Puglian red with mains. Chapeau to resident wine expert Loic for these choices. We rounded things out with port and dessert wine.

So overall, Bistro Moderne provided a very satisfying dining experience. I’m glad to have finally chalked up the review. Aside from the dinner service we sampled, they do a good value set lunch menu, brunch at the weekends and a roast on Sundays, so we look forward to trying these options on future visits.

Scores
Anna scores Bistro Moderne
4/5 for food
4.5/5 for presentation
3/5 for setting
4/5 for service
giving an overall 15.5/20

Blythe scores Bistro Moderne
4/5 for food
4.5/5 for presentation
3.5/5 for setting
4/5 for service
giving an overall 16/20

We ate: cured stonebass, soft shell crab, steak and chip, venison haunch, buche de noel, cheese

We drank: albarino, Puglian red, port, dessert wine, water

We wore: Spanish dress, Scottish tweed

Total bill: £159.50

Bistro Moderne on Urbanspoon

Written by BKR