A globally renowned food research hub in Edinburgh has opened its doors to the public, so what can you expect when dining there?

The Edinburgh Food Studio which can be found on the city’s Dalkeith Road, launched the in-house eatery, which will focus on lunch, dinner and weekend brunch with hand-picked, foraged or lovingly reared ingredients.

Edinburgh Food Studio

Picture: TSPL

Diners who attended the opening night tucked into an array of summer-focused dishes which included: Orkney scallop served with gooseberry and purslane; Girolles in a meadow-sweet and brown butter soup; Shetland turbot served with Barra cockles, sea aster and elderflower and East Lothian blackcurrants with yoghurt and oats.

Edinburgh Food Studio

Picture: Shetland scallop, TSPL

Wine pairings with each dish included some unexpected and delicious gems, including a Hallgarten Rheinschiefer, sparkling Cremant Klur and a wonderful, Chilean Tierra Itata.

A highlight was a dram of 1979 single cask blend from Edrington to finish off a thoroughly enjoyable dinner.

Each course was served by chef Ben, who gave a brief description of the dish and the matching wine.

Edinburgh Food Studio

Picture: Girolles in a meadow-sweet and brown butter, TSPL

The more-ish bread, made by Company Bakery, is now available to buy in the restaurant, and had sold out quickly on its debut morning.

The restaurant arm of the business will run in tandem with the existing Scottish food research lab and avant-garde events programme, which has earned the studio international acclaim.

Working alongside founders and food research pioneers, Ben Reade and Sashana Souza Zanella, will be head chef, James Murray, who is known for his work at leading restaurants, including his time as head chef at Michelin-starred Nur in Hong Kong, Raymond Blanc’s Le Manoir Aux Quat’saisons, and most recently, at Lyle’s in London, with chef James Lowe.

Edinburgh Food Studio

Picture: Shetland turbot served with Barra cockles, sea aster and elderflower, TSPL

Known for hosting some of the world’s top 50 chefs, Edinburgh Food Studio will continue to push the boundaries of contemporary food culture through collaborative events and research initiatives.

Launched in 2015, following a successful crowdfunding campaign, Edinburgh Food Studio follows an academic and analytical approach to cuisine.

Prior to founding the Studio, Ben Reade worked for Noma, Copenhagen, as Head of Research and Development at the Nordic Food Lab, while anthropologist Sashana Souza Zanella, is a graduate and latterly a tutor at the University of Gastronomic Sciences in Italy, where she specialised in co-ordinating international research trips.

Souza Zanella’s extensive wine and sensory training is behind the expertly curated (and eclectic) wine list, as well as the selected drinks pairings – a must-try for any wine enthusiast.

Edinburgh Food Studio

L-R New head chef James Murray with Sashana Souza Zanella and Ben Reade. Picture: EFS

The pair’s passion for discovery has led them to work directly with micro-producers across Scotland, while sharing their findings as research whitepapers.

Chef Ben Reade said: “We’ve had three incredibly rich years as an event space and food lab, where we’ve done everything from researching ancient Orkney seal recipes to hosting some of the world’s best chefs here in Edinburgh.

“Having our new head chef, James Murray, on board is the beginning of a brilliant new chapter.

“Research and innovation are central to what we do. We’re aiming to continue our showcase of Scottish produce with this evolution of our restaurant, and are now looking forward to being able to welcome guests on a more regular basis.”

Dinner is served as a seven course set menu for £50 and lunch and brunch are À La Carte menus.

About The Author

Rosalind Erskine

Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind writes for The Scotsman on all things food and drink related.

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