Since our last visit, some things have changed at Castle Terrace: there's a few more staff in the kitchen, a few new toys also, and they've enhanced their pastry offering including bread now baked in house. Meanwhile, some things haven't changed: front of house are as charming and professional as any, the brilliant use of the best of Scottish ingredients continues, and the kitchen, well, that's still as hot as hell. But there's one thing that has got even better since our last visit: the food.
We've seen it at many good restaurants, we even posted about it in respect of Jason Atherton's Pollen Street Social: when a great chef opens his/her first restaurant, there is a steep learning curve to climb in that first year. In turn, despite the huge achievement of Castle Terrace delivering food of the quality it did in its first year, both the chef and restaurant have grown in confidence and so in their ability to deliver on the customer experience. And that's what we found on our return, everything just a little bit sharper, a little bit better, no mean feat from the high bar they had already set themselves from the very start.
Given the sheer variety and number of courses, I'll mostly let the pictures do the talking.
We weren't finished there however, Dominic then sent out his hare 'a la royale', a dark, dense rich beyond belief dish, totally remarkable. I think I was so stunned by it that I forgot to get a picture of it. Dominic kindly said on serving the hare that he didn't expect us to finish it given how much food we had already been served. So how good was it? We both cleared our plates!
In our view, Castle Terrace is one of the truly great restaurants in the UK right now. Despite that fact, we believe it will continue to get better, Dominic just seems so talented, so passionate and so committed, and the restaurant is only a fraction over two years old. We're delighted that Castle Terrace is now getting the nationwide recognition it deserves, and in time we could easily see it getting its second star. We would not dream of visiting Edinburgh and not stopping by Castle Terrace to eat there; our suggestion is that neither should you.
Visit Castle Terrace website
Follow Dominic Jack on Twitter @dominicjack
Previously I visited Kyloe, Edinburgh
Next stop: Raby Hunt, Darlington
Location map for Castle Terrace