Chop House – Bruntsfield
Hands up who’s fancied Sunday lunch, but never been sure where to go to get the best one? It’s so difficult to choose as getting it wrong can be an expensive mistake and lead to disappointment all round. Rock hard Yorkies, insipid gravy and soggy veg don’t make for the most joyous Sunday afternoon get together. The most important bit to get right though is the centerpiece of the whole feast – the beef. And as Chop House is in the business of beef, we had high hopes for our visit to their latest opening in Bruntsfield to experience their take on the British classic. We had dined at their Market Street restaurant previously for a birthday meal, and it was one of the best steaks we’ve tasted. What would Sunday Lunch be like?
Chop House Bruntsfield follows in the footsteps of their Leith and Market Street restaurants and is the largest in the group (seating 95). With a character all of its own, it still has elements of Chop House’s original styling with rich orange leathers, stone walls, chrome geometric installations and huge Edison light bulbs filling the space. Set over two levels, the ground floor has open views across Bruntsfield links, and the window booths are perfect for people watching. The basement floor is where the kitchens are along with more tables and The Captain’s Table. The Captain’s Table is a semi-private area for small groups and comes complete with a lazy Susan to make it easier to share.
We started our feast with a pre-dinner cocktail – Rosato Spritz (£9.50). RinQuinQuin peach liqueur, Cocchi Rosa vermouth, strawberry and rose cordial, lime and Rosato Spumante. It was delicious, and provided a promise that spring days must be on the horizon. We’re not holding our breath though!
Rather than go straight to the main event, we had the opportunity to try some of the starters from the Sunday lunch menu. First up was Loch Fyne Oysters (£2.50 ea) which arrive in fresh every day and are shucked at the bar. I had mine with a simple twist of lemon juice, but they are also served with shallot vinegar and Tabasco. They provided a real taste of the sea and were perfect for getting the taste buds going.
Next up – Crispy shrimps with a bloody mary ketchup (£2.50 ea). These huge juicy shrimps had the lightest, crispy tempura batter and were a real treat.
Following on with the seafood theme, we also enjoyed fat buttery scallops that were served with the most delicious salty crisp pigs cheek. Served in the shell with an apple and celeriac slaw, they looked and tasted fantastic.
After all that seafood we got a hint of things to come with the short rib Scotch egg. This dish received tremendous feedback right around our tasting table. The perfectly cooked egg is wrapped in minced short ribbed beef and then finished with a crisp golden coat. The luxury Scotch egg was a triumph, and we could have eaten them all afternoon, but there were much more meaty delights on the way!
The main event
Meat is King at Chop House and the staff love to tell you all about its provenance. The meat can be fully traced from farm to field to plate and staff regularly visit suppliers, farms, and markets to ensure that excellent welfare standards are maintained. The meats used at Chop House come from three trusted sources. Shaw’s Fine Meats; so well known in the industry with a business dating back to 1828. Aberdeenshire Highland Beef; a small scale boutique supplier. Ireland’s Hannan Meats (Gold award winners at the World Steak Challenge) supply their Himalayan salt aged Glenarm Short Horn beef. With this pedigree, it’s no wonder the meat tasted so good, and the staff are so proud of it.
Add to this the fact that the meat is then hung in-house in state of the art dry aging fridges for up to 90 days and then cooked over hot white ash glowing coals until perfectly cooked and you get the idea how passionate this business is about serving up the best meat experience available.
Roast Beef Sunday Roast – £18.50
If you fancy a tasty Roast Beef Sunday lunch, then roasted sirloin, bone marrow gravy, roasters, honey roast root veg, buttered greens and a Yorkie is served plated to your table for £18.50 per person.
The full works Sunday roast – if you fancy pushing the boat out!
We were treated to two sharing cuts – Chateaubriand and Porterhouse which are served at the day’s market rate along with all the trimmings for an extra £7.50. The Chateaubriand is the fat end of the fillet and was served medium rare while the Porterhouse, also served medium rare, encompasses two different steaks – fillet and sirloin giving you the best of both worlds.
While there’s no shortage of fluffy roast potatoes, crisp Yorkshire puddings, honey roast veg, buttered greens and a wee pot of bone marrow gravy you can also add on Béarnaise, peppercorn, chimichurri or blue cheese sauces. If you are feeling extravagant, add half a lobster for £20, a dripping fried egg (£3) or some bone marrow (£3). The beef was outstanding and it was great to taste the different cuts of meat so expertly cooked. The hot coal grilling imparts a deliciously charred caramelised flavour which contrasts nicely with the succulent texture of the meat. The chateaubriand was exceptionally tender with the Invisible Man Tempranillo, Rioja Alta, enhancing the meaty flavours and proving the perfect accompaniment.
Room for dessert?
How could anyone have room for dessert after that feast we hear you cry? Our Sunday lunch was a relaxed, unhurried affair and after a couple of sociable hours dining, we were pretty stuffed. In the interests of research, we all shared a Salted Caramel Fondue with marshmallows and doughnuts (£11.50) and a cheeseboard with three kinds of cheese for £9.50 or 5 for £13.00. The cheeses were served with the most delicate fennel crackers and a tart cider jelly. The perfect sweet and savoury end to the meal.
Enjoy Sunday Roast at Chop House
The next time you are planning a Sunday lunch then we would definitely recommend giving Chop House a try. There are three locations to choose from in Edinburgh and we love the fact that you can have a really high-quality Sunday Lunch with great provenance, served with all the trimmings for £18.50 per person. We also like the fact that you can make it extra special with their excellent choice of sharing cuts. Meat lovers will be in their element at Chop House…perhaps not so much for the Vegetarian in your life.
PS. the cocktails deserve a special mention – they are exceptional!
88 Bruntsfield Place
Market Street and Leith both serve the same menu too!
Keep up to date with The Boys Eat Scotland’s travels
Huge thanks to the staff at Chop House for our invitation to come along with our fellow bloggers to see their new Bruntsfield restaurant and sample Sunday Lunch.