Grown Up Vegetarian Restaurant

by Organikal on November 28, 2006

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David Bann Vegetarian Restaurant is one of my favourite restaurants ever.

Why? Because they do proper grown up veggie food in a slick contemporary environment, with efficient and friendly laid back staff.

The food is also contemporary, but gutsy enough that you know you’ve been out for a delicious meal. There’s also enough simple snack like choices to please M (if its got chunky chips, he’ll order straight away! In this case, the chunky chips are simply perfect.)

Although not an expert on local and seasonal food, I know enough to be satisfied that there has been a substantial effort by the team to prepare a sensitive menu.

I haven’t ever been disappointed.

Despite Buy Nothing Day, M persuaded me to forsake principles and let him take me out for an early dinner on Saturday in celebration of my birthday. He swiftly followed my “but its Buy Nothing Day” rebuff, with an invite to Bann’s – and how could I refuse?

As usual, we managed to book off-peak, which suits us best. The restaurant was just quietening down post lunch, and starting to gear up for dinner covers – all with no fuss.

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Here’s what we had – lifted straight from the menu…

starter 1: Thai fritters
Aromatic, spicy fritters of smoked tofu, peas, ginger, green chilli, lime, sesame and potato. Served with fresh mango chutney and a roast garlic tomato sauce.
main1: Galette of aduki and aubergine
Organic beer crepe layered with spiced aduki bean and aubergine, topped with juniper pickled cucumber . Served with chunky chips, homemade apple & tomato ketchup and crème fraiche and chives.

starter2: Homemade hummus
with olive tapenade and homemade bread.
main 2: Mushroom,smoked cheese and ale strudel
Wild and cultivated mushrooms baked with heather ale and sage, blended with free range eggs and Ardrahan smoked cheese then rolled in filo pastry. Served on creamed parsnip puree with roast potatoes and beetroot with a mushroom jus.

Our choices didn’t disappoint, and my main course was simply the best I’ve had in quite a long time. I would’ve liked more beetroot – it was an inspired side on the dish. The mushroom jus was delightful and the strudel itself was hearty, warm, wintry and simply delicious. We’re quite often disappointed as veggies – mostly feeling we’re being served second-best. Our benchmark for whether something is good enough, is whether its as good as my home made food, and that’s not often! This main, however was far better – I couldn’t even hope to recreate it!

The staff were on form. The food was served in good time. The food was extra delicious and the bill was more than reasonable.

I can’t recommend David Bann highly enough – make a point of getting yourself along whenever you’re in Edinburgh.

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