I was berry-kindly invited along to try world-renowned chef Paul Tamburrini limited edition dessert and cocktail made with award-winning Scottish-grown AVA™ strawberries. Grown by a select group of growers in the North East of Scotland, AVA™ strawberries are known for their sweetness, delicious fruity aroma and beautiful heart shape.
The dessert consisted of Macerated AVA™ Strawberries, Soup, Sorbet and Mint Granita, and it was as lovely as it sounds, it was sweet but the mint granita was slightly sour which made the dessert light and refreshing. The dessert was a great palate cleansing end to the meal, but sweet due to the beautiful Scottish strawberries. The dish was matched with a sweet dessert wine, Chateau du Levant Sauternes which had a strong honey and apricot flavour to compliment the sweetness.
The cocktail which we had to start the meal as a delicious aperitif, the drink is also limited-edition ‘Strawberry and Ginger Caipirinha’, the cocktail was a perfect combination of sweet and spicy.
Paul Tamburrini is committed to using the best and the finest Scottish ingredients, his dishes are a combination of French cuisine using Scottish ingredients like Dornoch Lamb. I was treated to a specially designed six course taster menu, with each course matched with wine.
We started with an oyster with a gin and tonic granita, which was a lovely and refreshing start to the meal, matched with a Palmer and Co Brut Rosé Reserve.
The second course was a broth dish, with vermicelli noodles and topped with a piece of fois gras. The broth was creamy and indulgent, with texture of the fine rice noodles with the rich square of fois gras. The course was matched with Journeys End Chardonnay, which cut though the richness of the dish, due to its lemon and tropical flavours but it was also not sour due to the oak barrels used.
The third and my favourite course was the black truffle risotto, it was intense and creamy and just the right portion size. It was matched with the best glass of red wine I’ve ever tasted, made with Gaglioppo grapes from Italy. The wine was full bodied, with a rich fruit flavour like plum and cherry which made it a great match with the black truffle.
The next course was a surprise course, with king crab, fennel and lemon. The dish consisted of crab fingers with a fennel and lemon foam, and it was served with a Lustau Puerto Fino. The sherry had aromas of almonds, and a salty tang which went the seafood taste.
The fifth course was a rack of Dornoch lamb with various accompaniments including crispy potatoes, gravy, aubergine puree, pickled onions with black olives. The lamb was tender, and rare and fell of the bone (I’m droolin
g just thinking about it). The wine that was chosen to match was a Cabernet Sauvigion Xanadu, it was full bodied with blackcurrants and dark fleshy fruits combine with spicy and vanillia oak characters.
All in all, the food, drink, and service was impeccable. From the moment we walked through the door, we were greeted by the front of house, David who took care of us all evening. Thank you so much to the Macdonald Holyrood Hotel and the Paul Tamburrini restaurant for having us along, we had a superb evening and I couldn’t recommend it anymore for a special meal.
For reservations contact the restaurant on 0344 879 9028 or book online: www.macdonaldhotels.co.uk/our-hotels/macdonald-holyrood-hotel/eat-drink/paul tamburrini/