When I first heard that Dishoom was opening a restaurant in Edinburgh, I was excited. I had seen countless London bloggers rave about the Bombay style cafe, always going on about how amazing the brunches were and the fact that 99% of the time it was queued out the door. That had to be a good sign, right?
Dishoom Edinburgh opened in St Andrew Square at the end of November 2016, and since then I’ve visited the restaurant a couple of times. The first time was just for drinks – in the dark and atmospheric Permit Room bar – but it wasn’t until last week that I finally made it along to try out the food.
What We Ate at Dishoom Edinburgh
Owen and I visited Dishoom Edinburgh for a late lunch last week, so we were (relatively) restrained in the number of dishes we ordered, but we still got to try out a good selection. As the dishes are tapas style, you can order a few to share rather than having to stick to one main meal each.
We started with some vegetable samosas which were perfectly crispy, full of flavour and worked really well with the selection of dips and chutneys (the mint one is a-ma-zing). Dishes come out as and when they’re ready, but we didn’t have long to wait until the rest of our order arrived. The highlight for me was the Chicken Ruby – a slightly spicer variation of a classic butter chicken – mopped up with a warm, buttery garlic naan.
We also tried a couple of things from the grill menu, including the lamb boti kabab and gunpowder potatoes. Both dishes were tasty and perfectly spiced – nothing was particularly hot in terms of spice, but it was all flavoursome and fragrant (and a spoonful of the spicy tomato chutney helps to give things an extra kick if you’re a spice lover like me!).
Although this time we were on best behaviour and just had water along with our lunch, on my previous visit I sampled some of the cocktails when Dishoom Edinburgh kindly invited me along for complimentary drinks in the Permit Room. I would recommend the Bombay Colada which is, essentially, a frozen slush puppy pina colada spiked with coriander, chai, lime juice and rum. Yum! All the cocktails have a Bombay twist, with unique flavours and botanical notes to make them stand out. Make sure you order a side of okra fries to nibble along with your drinks – trust me, they’re amazing!
The Atmosphere at Dishoom Edinburgh
As it’s styled on a traditional Irani cafe from Bombay, Dishoom Edinburgh has an effortlessly cool vintage vibe. It feels like you’re in an old railway station cafe with lots of wood, hand-painted signage and plenty of character.
When we popped in for a late lunch around 3 o’clock it was fairly quiet, but the waiter mentioned we had just missed the busy lunch-time rush. The dining room is pretty big and I can imagine it would have a lively, buzzing atmosphere when it was full. Even when it was pretty quiet, the atmosphere was great – nice and relaxed but with plenty of chatter so you didn’t feel uncomfortable.
The staff at Dishoom Edinburgh were also fantastic and very friendly. They were more than happy to talk us through the menu and make some recommendations, which was particularly helpful as this was our first visit.
Worth a Visit?
As it has been pretty hyped up, I was worried that Dishoom Edinburgh wouldn’t live up to expectations. But luckily, it was great and well worth a visit. The food is very tasty, especially if you love Indian food (duh) and you like sharing plates. I really loved being able to nibble a few different dishes and share things between us – it made the meal very relaxed and laid-back.
I’ve heard that Dishoom’s brunches are legendary, so I think I’ll have to drag myself out of bed early for my next visit and try out their breakfast menu!
Have you been to Dishoom Edinburgh yet?