The Witchery by the Castle, Edinburgh

The Witchery by the Castle is a bit of an Edinburgh institution and has remained one of my favourite restaurants in the City, particularly the Secret Garden.

I have been many times over the years, but my latest visit was the first weekend of freedom, when bars and restaurants were finally allowed to re-open. As soon as we heard the news, my friend and I were on the internet, eager to book!

As always, it didn’t disappoint. On arrival, our temperatures were taken along with our details, with masks to be worn at all times as we moved round the restaurant. We started our evening off as we usually do, with a bottle of fizz – celebrating liberation and also our birthdays which we didn’t get the chance to celebrate!

Then onto the food! Naturally there was a bread basket, filled with warm bread and delicious creamy, salty butter, which was devoured as we chatted.

For starter I went for the butter poached asparagus with cheddar custard, toasted nuts and a herb and egg emulsion. This is me trying to be healthy(!) but I do love asparagus and it was in season, so perfect timing.

For main course, we both went for the scotch ribeye steak, portobello mushroom, caramelised onion, confit tomato and smoked marrow, with a side of chips.

Even though I tell myself I’ll try something different, I almost always end up choosing this dish! It is excellent though, cooked to perfection with fluffy crunchy chips.

In for a penny, in for a pound we moved onto a cheeseboard (to share of course)!

Four cheeses, oatcakes and some tasty caramelised onion chutney and quince jelly to accompany, just what you need as an in-between course.

Finally, the dessert. We both enjoyed the Witchery chocolate tart, praline mousseline, caramel hazelnut & espresso served on Happy Birthday plates, which was a lovely touch. The tart was rich, creamy and just the right size after all the food we had eaten!

A wonderful evening at The Witchery as usual, and hopefully the first of many nights out now that lockdown is being eased.

The Witchery is great for lunch or dinner, and they do a great pre-theatre menu (not that the theatres are open) and is a super place for that special occasion.