Dinner at Malmaison
Who knew that Malmaison did wonderful steak? Malmaison strikes again with its Summer a la carte menu. Here’s what Amy Falconer thought when she went along to try it.
It had been miserable, grey and raining all day so when the clouds suddenly broke and the sun came out just in time for us to be seated it felt strange and slightly apocalyptic. We were sat in the huge windows overlooking the pretty boats at The Shore so when asked by our waiter if we’d like to start with a refreshing G&T I knew things were on the up.
Now, before we get started, I must admit there’s a no carbs before Marbs thang going on in our household (him, not me) so the anxiety of having to review a restaurant on a restricted diet was strong. He needn’t have worried as there was plenty to choose from. For starters, we chose the Pepper seared rump beef carpaccio served with cauliflower and roast garlic cream, tempura florets, black truffle dressing and Parmesan dressed leaves, £10.50, and Seared Orkney scallops, chorizo, spinach puree, samphire and vierge dressing, £13.50. The carpaccio was as soft as butter, wonderfully blush and delicately spiked with the flavour of garlic and black truffle. The cauliflower tempura florets were teeny tiny and complimented the delicate meat. The scallops, cooked to perfection, were served in their shells sitting atop a plump piece of rich, paprika chorizo all in a pool of vibrant green puree with salty samphire on top. Not usually a fan of purees, mousses and the like, this hit the mark. It was a really gorgeous dish.
Next up, I chose the Yorkshire Dales lamb cutlet which comes with a piece of braised neck in a light vegetable broth and jus vinaigrette, £19, and he chose to try their signature strip steak which is Uruguayan 120 day grain fed Hereford beef sliced against the grain, served with whipped bone marrow croute and persillade with a pepper sauce (Au Poivre), from £25. As we were skipping the big bowl of fries (groan) we ordered a plethora of sides; sautéed spinach with lemon, garlic and extra virgin olive oil, £4, sautéed field mushrooms, £4.50, and buttered greens and rainbow chard, £4. My lamb was beautifully cooked, nice and rare as requested with the distinct charred taste of a well fired grill - delicious. I could’ve eaten more than one cutlet though, that’s for sure. Luckily Mr Steak had plenty of rich and hearty steak to share so I got the best of both worlds. Who knew they did such great steak in Malmaison? Certainly not me and I would wholeheartedly go back for a plate of my own. It was soft, smokey, rich and delicate – all kinds of yum! Sans chips, I was delighted when our side’s hit the mark, in particular the juicy, plump mushrooms which matched both dishes perfectly. The spinach and greens both needed a crack of salt and I could’ve taken another knob of butter on the greens but apart from that they were lovely accompaniments.
After a breather, he chose to end with a selection of cheeses from the le Fromage tray, £9.50, and I picked the intriguing sounding Chez Mal hot chocolate, £6.50. Don’t get confused, this is certainly not a drink but scoops of mint choc chip ice cream (my fave) with marshmallows, cocoa nib tuile and then smothered in hot Valrhona chocolate sauce which makes it melt a little and feels a wee bit Heston Blumenthal in its dramatic reveal. Chez Mal Brasserie, I’m impressed.
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Malmaison, 1 Tower Place, Edinburgh, EH6 7BZ, Tel: 0131 468 5000, www.malmaison.com