One of out guest contributors has shared her experience with Harvey Nics for a midweek lunch:-
Harvey Nichols Forth Floor restaurant was the venue for a long and lazy lunch on Tuesday this week. The location of this restaurant on the top floor of the Harvey Nics building offers diners spectacular views of Edinburgh Castle, the rooftops of some impressive buildings on Princes Street/George Street and from the balcony stunning views of the Firth of Forth.
The restaurant and brasserie are combined on the one large open plan floor, with the restaurant tables positioned to the left hand side nearer the windows and partitioned off by a fixed glass screen which I expect has been used to avoid impeding the stunning views for those dining in the brasserie. As expected, the restaurant offers tables neatly dressed in white table cloths whilst the brasserie is plainer but not without style. The entire room is clean, chic and bright with large oval bar in the centre of the room.
Food wise, my partner chose to eat from the Prix Fixe menu which was fairly good value, offering 2 courses for ¬£14 and 3 for ¬£17. For the first course, he chose the soup of the day which was creamy cauliflower. The report for the soup was very good, but it was a little on the hot side and so needed to be left to cool. I ordered the chicken liver parfait with toasted brioche and spiced chutney from the normal lunch menu (¬£5.50). I could not fault the chicken liver parfait: smooth and perfectly cooked. However there was little more than a teaspoon of spiced chutney which looked more like a garnish and only one slice of brioche - nowhere near enough to cater for the generous and thickly sliced piece of parfait. This is one of my bug-bears when it comes to pate (or parfait). I have never eaten in a restaurant which serves enough bread to go with the often over generous serve of this delight. Nevertheless it was delicious, and luckily I had some bread on the table to help me with the extra parfait.
For the main course, my dining partner chose the Pork Belly with pak choi in a pickled ginger, hoi sin and orange sauce. He described it as being stunningly cooked and absolutely delicious. It certainly looked impressive when it arrived and the pak choi which accompanied the pork was perfectly cooked without being over done. I chose pan-fried cod on a bed of carrot with mint, chorizo and orange (¬£11). Unfortunately there was no chorizo when the meal arrived, but that didn’t bother me too much as I’m not that keen on it anyway. The cod was perfectly cooked and the carrot salad was fresh and zesty. It was a perfect dish for a light lunch.
Afterwards, we both decided to forgo the desserts and opted for our usual after dinner cappuccino and latte. There were lovely and served with a yummy piece of Valhrona chocolate, but it was just a coffee at the end of the day. One thing I don’t like about buying cappuccino’s in cafes and restaurants is that they are always lukewarm and Harvey Nichols was no exception. When I order a hot drink, I want a hot drink.
The total bill came to ¬£48.95 with a couple of diet cokes and some bottled water. I noticed they added on a 10% service charge which I really am opposed to, as it presumes they are going to give good service. Admittedly they do provide excellent and friendly service, but I still don’t like being forced to leave a tip: it should be my choice!
All in all though, the experience was a good one, the service was exemplary and the food was impeccably presented and of a very high standard. I would definitely recommend a visit to Harvey Nichols Forth Floor without hesitation. Especially since there is an opportunity to buy a little something from either the food court, the clothing department or makeup and beauty counters on the way out ;-)