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“Tasty vegan options!”
Review of Empires

Empires
Ranked #966 of 2,591 Restaurants in Edinburgh
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$14 - US$33
Cuisines: Turkish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special Occasion Dining, Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, After-hours, Reservations
Neighbourhood: Old Town
Reviewed 31 December 2013

Our waitress Laura was charming and helpful, kindly providing a handwritten vegan menu. We shared the vegan meze platter, including some old favourites such as humus, tarator and falafel. Great option to bring your own wine, with water supplied in tall, elegant beaten metal jugs. Attractive interior of warm wooden panelling, ornaments and wonderful light shades and chandeliers, decorated with a mosaic of tiny, brightly coloured tiles. Good to be able to support an independent, family run business, offering an appetising selection of flavoursome and imaginative vegan choices.

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1  Thank kensmoon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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94 - 98 of 164 reviews

Reviewed 28 December 2013

We were a group of six, including two teenagers, looking for a meal out on Boxing Day evening. We booked but needn't have bothered as it happens, the restaurant being empty when we arrived. On busier days it would no doubt be wise to reserve. The restaurant is comfortable and attractively decorated in Middle Eastern style.

Apart from the dessert all dishes are the from the meze menu, which has an excellent choice of well over 20 different, hot and cold, meat and vegetarian dishes. You have to order plates of either three or five meze choices, which all come with a mixed salad. Service was good, food arriving within 10 minutes of ordering. You can BYOB for which a £3 corkage fee is charged. They are quite happy for you to share dishes and will provide extra plates and forks. We enjoyed the meze very much and found 2 plates of five choices and three plates of three choices to be plenty for the six of us. We only had room for baclava for dessert, sharing a plate of six small but tasty pieces between us.

The total cost was £95 (plus gratuity) for six of us, very reasonable for what we ate, and I would happily recommend Empires for a very enjoyable Turkish meal.

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Thank harriercornwall
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 November 2013

I had dined here several times before but some time ago. Has the restaurant changed hands? I could not order mezze dishes individually but had to order 3 on one plate so it was impossible to share. The green beans were tepid and soggy, the moussaka lacked taste. The salad was heaped in the middle of the plate and became soggy too. I asked for a wine bucket but they did not have one so the wine went in their fridge.
Poor.

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4  Thank picasso176
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 November 2013

I ate at Empires on a Thursday night, it was quite early and we were the only table. The decor is beautiful with hanging lamps and traditional Turkish furnishing. We had vegetarian meze platters which were lovely. The service was great and not too expensive.

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Thank Amelia M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 October 2013

My third review of Empires, whenever we visit Edinburgh it is top of our list to visit. We were in Edinburgh last Saturday (28th Sept), phoned at around 6.00 to ask if we could reserve a table for later that evening, at 9.30... 'No, we close at 9.30' (this is a city centre restaurant on a Saturday night??!!??). So we asked 'Can we make it 9.00 then please?'... 'No its not enough time for the kitchen'. So we were told 8.30 was the latest we could have. I would have left it and gone elsewhere, however it's my husbands favourite place, so he really wanted to go.

I wasn't best pleased, as I wanted to chill out in the hotel for a while before getting ready to go out, (we had just climbed Arthurs Seat!). So we had to get ready immediately and go out much earlier than planned.

We arrived in Empires at 8.30, there were only two other tables taken. I always find its a surprise and a shame it's so quiet (though considering their attitude to 'customers', maybe not??!!??). We ordered our food, which as we knew it would be, was delivered to our table less than 10 minutes after ordering. No complaints about the food, first class as ever.

We were just finishing our wine, around 9.15 when a table of 4 people walked in, were sat down, 2 of them went out to the local shop for alcohol. When they got back, they all put their order in, at 9.25?!?!?!. I was already annoyed about having to dine so early and it really did take the shine off the meal, however, this made me beyond cross. We were told we had to be there for 8.30, then an hour later they are serving people who wander in off the street.

My husbands theory as to what happened is that the lady he spoke to on the phone (one of the 2 female waitresses) told him 8.30, as they think if they get everyone in early, that they can go home early. The guy who owns the restaurant wasn't there when we first arrived, but had turned up by the time we left, so maybe if he is there, their attitude changes and they don't turn people away.

I think the boss should be aware of what is going on. As the restaurant is wonderful and it would be a shame if they loose custom because of how other staff are dealing with telephone bookings, from paying customers, who are made to feel like an inconvenience!

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2  Thank helen186233
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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