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“Outstanding once again”
Review of The Plumed Horse - CLOSED

The Plumed Horse
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$41 - US$103
Cuisines: European, British, Scottish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special Occasion Dining, Local cuisine, Business meetings, Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, After-hours, Lunch, Highchairs Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Description: Relocated from Castle Douglas to Leith (lucky for us), The Plumed Horse is the brainchild of superstar Chef/Proprietor Tony Borthwick who earned the restaurant a Michelin Star in 2001. Although the move to Leith has meant giving up the star it can’t possibly be too long before the Plumed Horse is decorated again. Stylishly simple, the restaurant is all white walls, white linen and light and airy space, the ideal backdrop to an evening of gastronomic delights. The imaginative menu has lost nothing in its relocation, still boasting impressively modern cuisine with a good classical twist and presentation which almost stops you digging in with that fork. The Plumed Horse’s star has certainly not fallen
Bonnyrigg, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Outstanding once again”
Reviewed 19 April 2014

This was our second visit to The Plumed Horse ( after a hiatus of three and a half years ) during which time they've lost their Michelin star, and there's an old saying that you should never go back, in case you've remembered the past through rose coloured glasses.......how wrong can you be!
Another stonking meal - the eight course tasting menu - even better value due to the fact that it was a voucher deal - £99 for two with a glass of Champagne - incredible!
Food to die for yet again - and I don't say that lightly, as a veteran of 9 different Michelin star restaurants ( our first being The Plumed Horse in Sept 2010 ) I'm still inclined to believe that The Plumed Horse is our favourite.
Keep up the good work and hopefully the Michelin inspectors will come to realise their mistake and re-instate your star!

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank DJAsmax
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
IanMBruce, General Manager at The Plumed Horse, responded to this review, 16 June 2014
Awwww DJAsmax,
Many many thanks for this.
Michelin Star. A strange beast. No one quite knows how it works. The algorithm is uncertain. All I know is, we do want it back and, IMHO, although it may be a little difficult for me to be objective, if we were ever worth that star, we are now. Plumed Horse has NEVER been better. But..Who am I to say?
Thankfully many diners seem to concur with your sentiment. Will we ever get it back? Who knows?
I believe it's possible that Edinburgh has reached saturation point with Michelin. Star or no star, our standards won't drop. Probably quite the opposite. As Ron McKenna, of Glasgow Herald, once wrote, customers should come in and experience Tony Borthwick and team fight hard for the star's return.
On the other hand, I must say that Tony cooks to very high standards and it is not "Having a star" that drives him. It is purely culinary excellence.
Only Michelin who can decide. I wonder if they take into consideration what lovely people like you say on TripAdvisor? I hope so.
All the best
Ian
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

563 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    433
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
45 reviews
20 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“highly recommended”
Reviewed 19 April 2014

We had found the plumed horse through various recommendations on the internet and were not disappointed. in fact, first reactions were very good. the immediate reception by the staff and the atmosphere is truly very warm. the layout of the restaurant ( which is itself quite small) is tastefully and thoughtfully done.
We decided to go for the tasting menu, all of which , bar one course, was really good. The service to start with was very good, but slipped during the evening in terms of speed and then forgetting to bring more water. the veloute was fabulous as was the pork belly and if we were to find ourselves in edinburgh again we would certainly go back.

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank bridget m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
IanMBruce, General Manager at The Plumed Horse, responded to this review, 16 June 2014
Thanks Bridget m,
Nice review. Sorry to hear about the service failure.
We discuss these reviews with the staff. It has been taken to heart by all concerned. Actually, that is all of us.
I must say that it's unusual. Not good that it happened to you.
Please come back. I'm confident you'll be happy with the service but, be warned, we don't go for speed. The chefs time their courses and it is rare, although it can happen, on occasion, that things slip a bit. Different circumstances can dictate.
We look forward to seeing you again.
Ian
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
25 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
“Forget star hunting...here is relaxed charming tasty dining”
Reviewed 15 April 2014

The very lovely Plumed Horse! We went in January and had a wonderful time. Having eaten a couple of months before and been extremely disappointed with one of their more famous neighbours we headed back down to Leith full of hope and we were delighted with what we found.

We ate the testing menu which was extremely good and well balanced. The dining room is stylish and relaxed. The staff were wonderful, really very charming. We had a relaxing evening and felt very well taken care of.

If you are in Edinburgh and looking for an excellent meal, that isn’t over priced, in a warm engaging environment, this is a good place to start.

The Plumed Horse is as good if not in a lot of ways better than many of the more well known eateries in Edinburgh.

  • Visited January 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank WildWestWannabe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
IanMBruce, General Manager at The Plumed Horse, responded to this review, 16 June 2014
Hello WildWestWannabe,
I'm sure you will be if you Wannabe. LOL!
Great review. Thanks so much.
I am so amazed when folks take the time to send positive notes to the planet.
What lovely people.
Ian
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Aberdeen, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
19 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“All-round excellence”
Reviewed 14 April 2014

We came here for dinner, after failing to get a reservation at some of the more "famous" eateries - what a revelation! The restaurant is in a quiet corner of Leith, quite small but relatively spacious - also most of the tables for couples were larger than most and gave both diners a reasonable view of what was happening round about (our bugbear is where one of you sits facing a wall for the evening!). We passed on the tasting menu as we prefer the traditional 3 courses, and the opportunity to select what we fancy. The food was uniformly well-presented, cooked to perfection and tasty - everything from the home-made rolls to the complimentary nibbles and amuse-bouche, the foie gras and duck confit starter, the roasted John Dory mains, and the apple tart sweet. The wine waiter came up trumps with a glass of riesling for the starter, a nice half bottle of Fleurie for the mains (a good selection of half-bottles on the wine list), and a pudding wine to round the evening off. Service was attentive and friendly without being obtrusive - exactly as it should be. Not a cheap Saturday night at just under £200 (including a glass of champagne each to start things off) but we came away very pleased with our evening out.

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Colin W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
IanMBruce, General Manager at The Plumed Horse, responded to this review, 16 June 2014
Hi Colin W,
I really like this review it ambles through loads of positives. Nice to read.
So glad you were with us and that you found us good.
All the best.
Ian
(p.s. Must work on that "Famous" thing.)
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Edinburgh, Scotland
Level Contributor
21 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Great food marred by clunky service”
Reviewed 7 April 2014

Sadly, I came away with a slight nagging feeling of disappointment after having their tasting menu with matching wines. I've got to state straight away that I thought the food was terrific, and I'd definitely go back - but for a la carte, and with my own choice of wines.
It was right at the start that I was uncomfortable. We looked at the two menus (al la carte vs tasting) and decided pretty quickly to go for the tasting menu. After 10 minutes or so we were presented with canapés while our menus were still on our places - we moved them onto our sideplates. Accompanied by tap water. It was only when the waitress removed them enquiring whether we’d enjoyed our canapés that I realised this wasn’t just some amuse bouche. I caught her eye shortly after that and asked whether we could order the tasting menu with matching wines and she went to get the champagne organised for us (I’d expected canapés and champagne fairly speedily – in most restaurants I order an aperitif when I’m handed the menu!). A bit clunky, really, and the delivery of the wine thereafter didn’t really tally with the meal – we had the pigeon with no drink as we’d finished the white and the red wasn’t served unto the chicken arrived. We did get a top up of pinot noir after that course, which was much needed.
As I said, it was a fine meal but it could have been more relaxing. And I guess when you’re paying fairly steep prices you expect the very best.

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
4 Thank James_Dalrymple
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
IanMBruce, General Manager at The Plumed Horse, responded to this review, 16 June 2014
Hello James_Dalrymple
I remember your visit. I am glad you liked the food.
If you were not offered aperitifs when handed the menu I really don't understand why not. That IS what we do.
We give the canapes out to nibble whilst you choose. That was no accident and certainly not CLUNKY.
It stated on the menu when wines would come with your course. The Wood Pigeon was not one of those. Not clunky. Quite clearly stated. If you were given Pinot Noir top ups I would consider that very friendly not clunky.
You might gather I am slightly narked by your choice of the word "Clunky!".
Of course your opinion matters and you should have been offered drinks from the start.
CLUNKY?
I get the impression that although you say you'd come back that you wouldn't. Why would you if it's clunky?
All that said..I have browsed through your other reviews and it seems our food does come off rather well. Thank you.
I hope you do return.
Ian
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