An upmarket bistro that avoids pompousness. Steaks are recommended, although sugar lovers will be most impressed by the desserts
This is a smart option that’s mercifully free of the stiff airs and graces you’d normally expect. It’s not even the poshest in the Martin Wishart portfolio; his eponymous Leith restaurant won Edinburgh’s first Michelin star, and he has another restaurant near Loch Lomond that’s also Michelin-starred. The Honours however, is what the Edinburgh chef calls the ‘less formal’ of the three, and is Wishart’s interpretation of a bistro.
It’s brasserie food with the stops pulled out, and it’s not unusual for three members of staff to be tending a table at once – topping up things, unveiling others, wordlessly de-crumbing a messy bit of tablecloth. They never cross the line into obsequiousness, though, and the atmosphere stays friendly, rather than servile. The restaurant is famous for its steaks – the Chateaubriand in particular, hints the waiter (ever-so- slightly suspiciously, perhaps, seeing as, at £69 it’s also the most expensive thing on the menu). In fact, meat lovers should take note of ‘Le Weekend Offer’, an unfussy but excellent roast rib of beef for two, fries, a bottle of malbec and coffee for £48, served on a Saturday, at the off-peak feasting time of 3-6pm. Desserts are a highlight. The non- sweet-toothed can get a plate of cheese from Henri’s – a French deli in Morningside – or else there’s the souffle du jour, plus rotating spots from the likes of a sharing tarte tatin with cinnamon ice cream, or dainty sundaes with caramelised bananas and crunchy pecans.
If the wines haven’t done the job, there’s also a pretty special Zacapa espresso with 23-year-old rum and creme de cacao to round things off, or finish you off – depending on how much you’ve pushed the boat out already.
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58a North Castle Street
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Fantastic lunch at The Honours. Full of delicious flavours from start to finish. Incredibly fresh Cornish oysters with well judged gin fizz granite and champagne granite with lemon were perfect to start. Sampled staples such as the unctuous hand dived scallop and black truffle tagliatelle and melting ox cheeks ala boardalaise. Special caramelised onion soup with foie gras and potato siphon perfect for a cold winter's day. Impecable service with friendly,welcoming, and highly knowledgeable staff led by Lisa. Decor modern and classy. Highly recommended!