Testing Menus: A Taste of Five Star Edinburgh

Erin Halloran is our chef de rang:
Here at the Torridon we are encouraged to indulge ourselves in as much training and self-education as we can possibly benefit from. So this month Robert and I headed to Edinburgh to participate in 48 hours of training to increase our knowledge of whisky. We also decided to add to this by experiencing what it is like to be on the receiving side of great service. We arrived at Prestonfield House, a five star retreat two miles from the city centre. Although our stay was short, the staff were highly professional taking hospitality and service to the next level while at the same time, making us feel at home.

One of the things about working in the industry is that you tend to pick up on the smallest details. This can either work in your favour or ruin your impression of a place entirely. In this instance it made me realise that not only does Prestonfield deserve their five star status but that our level of service here at the Torridon is, happily, of a similar standard.

The next part of our journey led us into dinner time, Robert’s favourite part of the day (other than breakfast and lunch). We headed out to wine and dine at The Kitchin, a Michelin star restaurant owned and operated by Tom Kitchin.

The restaurant is beautifully situated on the harbour in Leith and maintains a high profile thanks to many reviews and articles. The service and the menu were both very memorable.

In true Robert-style we opted for the seven course tasting menu with matching wine. What a taste sensation and the wine just complimented the experience.

Our evening was topped off by Tom Kitchin, hospitable and charismatic, chatting with all his guests and then honouring my request for a guided tour of his kitchen.

The whole evening has given me a great sense of excitement for the results of this year’s AA inspection as I know that when our chef Bruno Birbeck pulls out all the stops, his menu along with the entire dining experience can only be described as Michelin star quality.

To finish off our trip we headed to the Scotch Whisky Heritage centre, after all this was the main reason we were in Edinburgh. It was a day of history, manufacturing and tasting and ultimately sitting a world-recognized exam. I can now proudly say we both passed with Robert even going that step further and achieving a merit (well done Robert!). The highlight of my day was the barrel ride… something I’ll let you ponder and maybe even entice you to experience yourself.

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Dan & Rohaise are proud owners of The Torridon a family run and independent Hotel and resort. Passionate about food, service, provenance and promoting hospitality as an Industry of choice, especially for young people.

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