Smith & Gertrude
I’m starting to feel that I’ve reached a comfortable level of beer ignorance, particularly as I build my lack of knowledge about cocktails. But when it comes to wine I have little frame of reference with which to mark my lack of familiarity. With study I’ll become a dunce; for now I’m a solid ignoramus.
Although there are fewer barriers to appreciation than were previously perpetuated, I’ve largely steered clear of reviewing wine bars, with Smith & Gertrude at the forefront of the outcropping we’ve had in recent years. But when I was in need of something dessert-ish to round out a meal nearby, I thought a contemplation of their charms might be in order.
With pale wood to the fore, the interior, by local designers Splintr, feels light and airy. I took up station at the bar and took in their chalkboard of wines by the glass.
I took a recommendation as is usually the way. There was a pause as the friendly counter woman thought twice about recommending the most expensive on the list, a Morgon Gamay, before she went for it and explained it was delicious. I was happy to go with that. A small glass was £9.50.
It was an excellent choice as it was complex on the nose and smooth on the palette. It was exactly the light drinking red that I was looking for.
I was tempted by talk of sherry so ordered a little El Candado Pedro Ximenez (£4.95). It seemed rude not to add some cheese so on another recommendation I matched a Jura from France (£4) which came with plentiful crackers.
They get their cheese from nearby George Mewes. This was an excellent nutty accompaniment to the raisin sweetness of the sherry. They worked together beautifully.
So overall, I was highly impressed with Smith & Gertrude. They catered adroitly to my requests for help in navigating the menu to best advantage. I enjoyed everything I sampled muchly. I’d recommend it to you next time you’re looking for some calm reflection over a good glass.
Address: 26 Hamilton Place, Stockbridge, Edinburgh EH3 5AU