Aptly our first meal out since creating this blog is at our favourite restaurant in Edinburgh – The Olive Branch – in Broughton Street.  We just love The Olive Branch…wonderful staff, excellent food, brilliant atmosphere and this visit didn’t disappoint.

A group of us were heading to the Playhouse to see West Side Story and decided to have a bite to eat first.  The Olive Branch is extremely handy for the Playhouse and our booking was made for 5.45pm  and the place was full.  It’s always best to book in advance as tables sell out most nights.

Our group is a nightmare as we have a number of allergies.  Donnie’s allergic to the Nightshade family (potatoes, tomato, paprika, aubergine…..the list goes on!)  and Tanya is Gluten Free.  It’s a good job Laura and Alan couldn’t make it as they are allergic to Chicken and Nuts respectively!

The menu has just recently changed and the staff were very knowledgeable about each choice and option and were happy to advise about allergies.  The new menu has a great range of Gluten Free options which are marked GF.  They also have a few HO’s (Healthy Options!) if you fancy being good!

As we were pushed for time we decided to go straight to mains.  The Olive Branch Burger is wonderful, so Donnie and Di decided on the burger, along with some Isle of Mull Cheddar on the top (£10.95 with an extra £1 for the cheddar.)  Raymond had Grilled Cod Fillet, chorizo and cannellini bean stew, salsa verde for £13.95. Jane had Beer Battered fish, handcut chips, and pea puree  (11.95) and Tanya opted for Chargrilled 28 day aged Scotch 8oz Rib eyed Steak, handcut chips, salad and peppercorn sauce(£19.99)

The Burger:

The Cod

We loved the old menu, but the new menu makes a refreshing change.

Other main’s that tickled our fancy for next time were: Braised Beef and Guinness Stew with spring onion and cheddar mash; Roast Rump of lamb, saffron potatoes, asparagus and roast garlic jus (GF), Grilled Red Mullet, quinoa tabouleh, chargrilled pineapple salsa (HO).

The service was first class and mains were delivered to the table in good time, but we ran out of time for pudding with all our chat!  We each had chosen our dessert but that will have to be eaten on the next visit!

Desserts were Olive Branch Cheesecake of the Day, Mississippi Mud Pie, Rhubarb Crumble with Cardamon Ice Cream, Trio of Luca’s Ice Cream or Sorbet, Affogato – Ice cream and an espresso – along with a liqueur if you fancy or Cheese with oatcakes and cider, brandy chutney.

When we settled up we got 10% of the bill as a Pre Theatre bonus!

Final stop….the toilets!  Always a good indication as to whether a place is loved or not.  Lovely candles and pictures of old Edinburgh and Baylis and Harding Hand wash and Hand Cream spotless.  On the way back to the table, the kitchen was going like a fair.  There is also a lovely wee window in the restaurant where you can see into the kitchen.

All in all, excellent food, service and ambiance.  We will certainly be back again – we love it here!!

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