The Herald Magazine - - ETC - Joanna Blyth­man, Sun­day Her­ald

Ge­orge Street, Ed­in­burgh (0131 225 1550) There is a re­al­i­sa­tion that eat­ing habits are chang­ing. The Ital­ian full Monty, though a deeply at­trac­tive propo­si­tion, is rarely a re­al­is­tic un­der­tak­ing. The new a la carte menu at Con­tini Ge­orge Street re­flects the zeit­geist. Only two pasta dishes and one risotto are on of­fer. The “primi” show­case high­qual­ity meats and cheeses given mod­ern treat­ment. So our vel­vety, rose­marycured, Tus­can lardo came with creamed Ital­ian goat’s cheese, lus­cious thymeroasted grapes and crum­bled bis­cotti; orig­i­nal and not ex­pen­sive at £6. Novel com­bi­na­tions give a nod to “clean eat­ing”. Raw cauliflower shav­ings come doused with porcini and lemon oil, un­der tex­tu­rally com­ple­men­tary bread­crumbs and crum­bled Vene­tian spiced wal­nuts. Pa­per-thin raw fen­nel pro­vides a crisp struc­ture that sup­ports slices of soft pink-dashed Tarocco or­ange and fat mauve-green olives, all driz­zled with aca­cia honey.

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