Ten seats, two chefs, one table. ‘The Table’ restaurant hidden in Dundas Street Edinburgh is a restaurant which is unlike any other in town. With only one dedicated sitting per service, diners are able to interact with and watch head chef Sean Clark as he creates a 7 course surprise tasting experience.
For many it may be off-putting having to share the table with other diners that you have not met however as soon as we entered we were welcomed and made to feel at ease. Sean explained how the night would flow and had such a natural friendly personality which only enhanced this. He took care of our drinks too, making sure they were chilled or decanted as The Table has the added bonus of BYOB.
There are no hints or clues on what the menu will be until you watch the chef at work and start to guess what each course will be. When all diners have their plates, Sean passionately explains the dish that you are going to eat. Our dining experience started with three appetizers which were packed with flavour and made us excited about what was to follow.
The first of the seven courses was definitely not something you see often on menus in Edinburgh; titled ‘Jumping Jack Flash’ was Frogs Legs with Beetroot, Hazelnuts and a wild garlic dust. The frog’s legs were coated in a light layer of breadcrumbs and deep fried. The breadcrumbs gave a texture to the legs which were tender and delicious. The beetroot and hazelnuts gave the dish a flavour boost as I often feel frog legs are a delicate, subtle taste that requires an accompaniment. The wild garlic dust acted as seasoning for this well balanced dish.
Jumping Jack Flash
I think I will remember the next course for the rest of my life! It was truly magnificent ‘Golden Wonder Cheese and Onion’. This was Isle of Mull Cheddar Raviolo with an Onion Broth. The taste was certainly in the title of the dish; intense cheese and onion on a different level! Despite the title of ‘Golden Wonder Cheese and Onion’ bringing to mind a somewhat unrefined picture in my mind the dish had a touch of class and real elegance. The beautifully presented raviolo was delivered with gold leaf topping adding the “golden” element to the wonderful cheese and onion. Served on the side was whey buttered, locally sourced bread which made a lovely accompaniment.
Golden Wonder Cheese and Onion
The next dish ‘Diamond in the Rough’ had a hard act to follow! However it certainly gave it a run for its money! Perfectly cooked Halibut served with a creamy, yet light, caviar sauce. On the side of the plate sat different textures and tastes of leeks which were topped with thinly shaved truffle. The different methods used to produce the different textures of leek was not just impressive but highlights the amount of detail and care the chef puts into his food.
Diamond in The Rough
“Oh Deer”, Wild Venison with Parsley, Grapes and Celeriac was our meat course. The cooking of the venison was sublime. The meat was so tender and juicy. The sauces all tasted different but came together perfectly. The celeriac was a delightful addition to the dish and made a change from the usual starch element. The venison was topped with crispy salami, which was a delicious addition and certainly a flavour combination I want to recreate myself at some point.
The next dish was certainly a talking point at the table. Named ‘Mardi Gras’ (which is French for Fat Tuesday to reflect the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods), however, although this dish used rich ingredients it was executed with a lightness and delicacy. I am still unsure if this was a sweet or savoury course but it was delightful nonetheless. A bright green smooth apple and spinach puree topped with a light pistachio sponge. This was then delicately topped with Foie Gras powder which had been chilled and was so light it crumbled with the slightest of touches. To top the tower black truffle thinly sliced. Thinly sliced black truffle topped the tower off with a bit of opulence.
More theatre in taste was to follow with ‘Werther’s Not So Original’. This was inspired by Chef Grant Achatz who is often identified as one of the leaders in molecular gastronomy. A spoonful of caramel powder which turns to toffee in your mouth. This was a mouthful of sweet and surprising indulgence.
Werther’s Not So Original
‘You’re Bounty Like This’ was the desert of the evening; a Pineapple Tarte Tatin with Coconut Sorbet. The Pineapple was warm and caramelised to give sweetness to the dish. The coconut sorbet was smooth and creamy and fresh coconut gave the dish further textures and freshness.
You’re Bounty Like This
To end the evening we were served three petit fours. Poached pear in hazelnut crumb, pate de fruit, and a warm doughnut, which were all mini explosions of taste.A perfect way to end a perfect night.
Sean not only is a great chef with extraordinary talent but an accomplished host who makes sure you have a special and relaxed evening. I can safely say my evening could not have been improved in any way and I will definitely be returning.
- Food - 10/1010/10
- Atmosphere - 10/1010/10
- Service - 10/1010/10
- Value for Money - 10/1010/10