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Tutto Matto, Edinburgh, restaurant review

Edinburgh's Tutto Matto is the perfect place for a gluttonous feast, finds Gaby Soutar

Published: December 28, 2015

Today, you may feel that you never want to eat again.

You might imagine that you never want to look a turkey drumstick in the eye, pierce a chipolata’s oily jacket or eat a feral tasting brussels sprout. You may have already slid the flat toffee Quality Streets (the ones nobody likes) and the end of the dates into the bin.

I can assure you, this will pass, maybe even by lunchtime today. Such is the human stomach which, the internet tells me, can accommodate up to one gallon of food.

"The Glasgow pizza was a filthy hangover breakfast themed feast"

Often, the first craving to return is the one for pizza. That’s why today is called Boxing Day, because this foodstuff often comes in boxes, unless you sit in, which is what we did at new pizzeria Tutto Matto.

It’s perfectly positioned in the heart of Edinburgh’s student-ville and handily opposite the Festival Theatre. They’ve fitted out the former premises of Italian restaurant Ti Amo, which used to boast an indoor fountain, with wooden pizza paddles on the wall and low slung lights.

To start, we shared the baked crab pot (£6), baked calamari (£6) and the voodoo chicken (£6).

The crab option – served in a little black ramekin – wasn’t pretty, with a topping that consisted of a globulous layer of cheese that was a bit like opaque ectoplasm. Underneath though, were plenty of bits – buttery whole baby squid, prawns, maybe the eponymous crab (though we couldn’t identify it) and white fish. This liquid offering kind of needed something – bread? – to do the mopping up with.

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The calamari option was pretty good, as it consisted of well-seasoned peppery hoops with a light crunchy crumb, and an electrifyingly garlicky aioli on the side, while the chicken featured five wads of breadcrumbed breast with a hefty buzz of chilli.

Pizza-wise, they cleverly undercut the likes of nearby Pizza Express and Pizza Hut by a quid or two. The other USP is the fact their toppings are more than a bit doolally.

As well as more traditional offerings, like pepperoni (£7) or quattro formaggi (£7) there’s the Barcelona (£9, with romesco tomato sauce, prawns, smoky chorizo, morcilla, manchego and mozzarella), the Bombay (£8, spiced masala sauce, tandoori chicken, onions and mozzarella) and the relatively dour, wet weekendy sounding Edinburgh (£8, Napoli sauce, Grant’s haggis and Scottish cheddar).
I went for the hipster’s choice of Berlin (£8) and I think I won.

With a crispy edged base that was as powdery as the floor of the Yardley talcum factory, it was blanketed with an inch thick and spongy drift of melted emmental and fingernail sized bits of landjager sausage, all of which was lifted by shreds of vinegary sauerkraut.

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Our other two pizzas were alright, but not quite as successful.
The Glasgow (£8) was a filthy hangover breakfast munchie-box themed feast, with house tomato sauce, crumbled Simon Howie lorne sausage, Stornoway black pudding, Ayrshire smoked bacon, Scottish sharp cheddar, mozzarella and a baked egg on top. Strangely, despite all that stuff (and there was plenty of each listed ingredient) this option was rather bland overall.

Our Peking duck number (£10) featured small nibs of duck meat, a coating of sweet hoisin sauce in lieu of tomato, spring onions and yet more mozzarella, for an unsophisticated Chitalian mash up that scratched a certain junk food itch.

For pudding, there are ½ pint sundaes (£4.95) and that’s your lot. From options including tiramisu and white chocolate flake, we went for the sweet peanut butter and Eton mess versions.

Served in a glass, these were a combo of Mr Whippy style plain ice-cream, flavoured dragon’s blood and, in the Eton Mess case, flecks of meringue. All fine, and this place is certainly worth a visit if you want to put the gallon limit of your stomach to the test.

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We couldn't quite do it, so took away our leftovers to have later.

Well, it is Boxing Day.
How much?

Lunch for three, excluding drinks, £53.90

Like this? See also:

Kilted Lobster, Edinburgh, restaurant review

• Harajuku Kitchen, Edinburgh, restaurant review


Gaby Soutar is a lifestyle editor at The Scotsman. She has been reviewing restaurants for The Scotsman Magazine since 2007 and edits the weekly food pages.

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