So the guide books would have it, no trip for Vegetarians or Vegans to Edinburgh would be complete without a trip to Vegetarian restaurant David Bann. So on a recent visit to Edinburgh with Ruth and her Mum this sounded good enough reason to me.
The restaurant has been open since the turn of the Millenium just off The Royal Mile, serving its diverse and interesting menu that prides itself on satisfying non meat eaters and omnivores alike. More fine than cafe dining, it has an atmosphere that’s contemporary and convivial. In fact out of the three of us I was the only Vegetarian dining.
It’s a modern restaurant, serving a creative, eclectic menu in a warm room, which is understated and deep aubergine in colour with a silver and dark glint, and feels airy, spacious with well spaced tables. It promises much.
The menu is also vegan friendly with a number of vegan dishes to compliment the vegetarian ones.
The menu has a globally inspired sweep from the Mediterranean to the Pacific with an eastern twist to finish and looks invitingly interesting with a modern innovative twist.
A home made ravioli filled with a blend of artichoke, shallot chickpea and Basil with a grilled artichoke heart, tomato pesto and toasted pine nuts.
It was a lovely dish. A taste of the Mediterranean, the varied flavours simple, and complimentary. The Ravioli was well made, and with the tomato pasta felt healthy as well as substantial as a starter.
A Very enjoyable veggie pasta.
The dish, a loaf of mushroom baked in Heather Ale, Bonnet Goats Cheese from Aryshire, with rosemary and wrapped in filo pastry. Served with cream mash potato, and roasted Mediterranean vegetables. It was a fairly substantial dish, I love strudels so this was a nice choice.
In fact it was as good a strudel as you could find. The layered pastry, thin, warming with the gentle flavour of the goats cheese and the tang of the veg providing a substantial main course. It was a well executed dish be after a day walking round Edinburgh was just the ticket.
A bit of chocolate heaven, a well made soufflé, gooey, well presented and finished with a delicious vanilla ice cream. A highlight dish of the trip.
We also drank a nice bottle of South African Chenin Blanc.
David Bann deserves its loyal following and well regarded reputation. It’s one of the best Vegetarian restaurants in Edinburgh and probably the UK. It comes over as been peerless in its craft, reliability and inventiveness. It’s range of eclectic vegetarian and vegan dishes are as good as you will find in Edinburgh outside a Michelin starred restaurant.
The menu is suitably interesting for meat eaters to enjoy also, which is surely a good thing. Fashion now dictates that vegetarian menus encompass good quality seasonal ingredients. In that David Bann achieves the brief without taking the innovation to new heights and treading away generally from the traditional path, that’s ok, though maybe there is a nod to modernism with some of the ingredients. I think there is room to be more innovative at Bann, though the food is thoughtful and well made and it is popular. So why change too much?
I liked David Bann, it felt indulgent without been stuffy and for the reasonable pricing is a distinctive choice for Vegetarians in Edinburgh. How it responds to the changing fashions and new veggie innovators will be interesting to see.
Thanks for reading
Disclosure: We paid for our own food and drink at David Bann, my opinions are honest as always.
David Bann, 56-58 St Mary’s Street, (off Royal Mile) Edinburgh, EH1 1SX.