One trend I have noticed in Edinburgh over the last year or two are several very good neighbourhood restaurants popping up, places like LeftField, Aurora, Taisteal, and more recently I’d add The Little Chartroom to that list.
This little restaurant on Leith Walk is delivered by the ex Head Chef and Restaurant Manager from Castle Terrace – if you’re not familiar with the Edinburgh food scene, that’s code for – you’re in safe hands!
We were seated at the bar and at first I must admit to being a bit disappointed, and then I realised it was the best seat in the house. You can chat to the chef and see dishes being plated, a great foodie experience at no extra expense!
Alex, slightly hungover, opted unsurprisingly for the Haggis Sausage Roll and Turnip Ketchup. Apparently these little bad boys have been flying off the shelf and they’ve even started doing them to take away – now there’s a Friday lunchtime treat!
I had the comforting Chicken Broth which had chicken legs, sweetcorn, spring onion and thyme. I had an increasing sense of peace with every mouthful, and the crispy chicken on the side was an indulgent little side.
The Pork Cheek & Belly, Hipsi Cabbage and Heritage Carrots had the potential to be a heavy dish requiring an afternoon nap afterwards. On the contrary the portion was sensible for lunch and it managed to maintain a lightness about it.
I had the pasta dish of Tagliatelle, Mushroom, and Peas which was a hearty portion which I couldn’t quite finish. The creamy sauce was very rich and coated the beautifully handmade pasta. It’s a rare thing to get a really delicious bowl of pasta, and this was just that. Too often the pasta dish on the menu is out of a bag and not of great quality, and that’s just not good enough when you’re paying a good price for a quality meal.
While everything was delicious at The Little Chartroom, it was dessert that stole my heart. An elderflower ice cream was sandwiched between two ultra thin wafers and topped with berries, granola and raspberry sauce. The whole thing took me right back to my youth ordering ice cream sandwiches from the ice cream van. It takes real skill to make something like this appear so simple, and yet deliver so perfectly. And it pretty much sums up The Little Chartroom, it’s a master at making dishes appear incredibly simple. I even left thinking I could recreate some of it (yes, you may laugh, I am!). Alas, the simplicity is an illusion and it takes years of skill to pull off this level of cookery. Oh well, I’ll just need to visit again..
The Little Chartroom
Location: 30-31 Albert Place,Edinburgh, EH7 5HN
Good for: Great neighbourhood dining, cosy ‘local’ vibes