The Educated Flea

While we try to retain our “secret shopper” approach to the vast majority of our reviews, sometimes it just isn’t achievable. Such is the case with two new places that have recently opened on Broughton Street: Rollo Broughton; and today’s lunch venue, the Educated Flea.

Exterior

Exterior

The reason in both cases is that I know the excellent folks that run the places very well. In the case of Educated Flea, it’s the third restaurant from the Three Birds and Apiary team.

Devoted readers will remember that The Apiary hosted a stellar Scran Salon for us back in November 2014 with custom-made mega burgers that were truly epic.

I’d popped in for an early look in their first week of trading during which I sampled their exceptional duck burger, which now features in the Burgerquest exceptionals. I visited today for the “proper review” visit, with owners Kath and Jo fully aware. I was originally going to be accompanied by occasional guest quester Richard, but he was unavoidably detained so I was a solo diner.

Soup

Soup

The menu follows the tried and tested formula of the other two places. There are fantastic sharing platters, for example, but that seemed a little extravagant for lunchtime.

In addition to the lunch menu, there was a selection of specials. I was hooked in by talk of squid ink and chorizo arancini, but couldn’t resist the soup when it was described. Sweet potato and chilli sounded good; a curry dressing and wild garlic flower tempura sounded really good. I was still going to have a main course too despite the two starter approach. I chose the wee courgette pancakes topped with asparagus and poached egg.

Arancini

Arancini

The soup and arancini arrived together looking very smart indeed. The arancini were spot on with excellent chorizo at the heart of a funky inked rice ball that was suitably crisp on the outside.

The soup was a riot of flavour that came together with deft balance. The tempura garlic flowers ensured I would ward of vampires and indeed any other humans for the rest of the day. It was excellent stuff and rightly joins the Soupquest exceptionals.

Asparagus, poached egg, courgette fritters, salsa

Asparagus, poached egg, courgette fritters, salsa

The main course delivered outstanding courgette pancakes with a chunky and bright salsa topped with poached egg and the last few stems of seasonal asparagus. I’m a huge fan of courgette pancakes in this style and often subsist on them when in Istanbul. The egg yolk was superbly oozy bringing the dish together very well. Once the asparagus season is over, I’d be tempted to omit it from future versions of the dish as other elements carried the day very successfully.

So overall, the Educated Flea has hit the ground running. It’s such a joyful and spirited place with a sense of people really enjoying great, imaginative food, both from the customer and staff perspective. Make sure to visit soon when you need you palette and your day brightened.

Scores
Blythe scores Educated Flea
4.5/5 for food
4/5 for presentation
4/5 for setting
4/5 for service
giving an overall 16.5/20

I ate: sweet potato and chilli soup with wild garlic flower tempura, apple, and curry dressing; chorizo and squid ink arancini with sherry and honey vinaigrette; wee courgette pancakes with poached egg and asparagus

I drank: water, espresso

I wore: pinstripes

Total bill: £16.50

Address: 32b Broughton Street, Edinburgh, EH1 3SB

Written by BKR