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“Food very Nice, Wine very Expensive” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Witchery by the Castle

The Witchery by the Castle
Ranked #281 of 2,437 Restaurants in Edinburgh
Price range: $31 - $112
Cuisines: Seafood, European, British, Soups, Scottish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Romantic, Local cuisine, Special occasions
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Outdoor Seating, Private Dining, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff, Wine and Beer
Neighborhood: Old Town
Description: Located in a historic 16th century building at the gates of Edinburgh Castle, James Thomson's Witchery is the most atmospheric and spectacular dining destination in the city. A unique setting, stunning interiors and superlative food, wine and service combine to create memorable dining experiences for locals, visitors and celebrities alike. The staff use the best of Scotland's produce including Angus beef, lamb, game and seafood. Nestled in the most historic part of the building, The Witchery dining room is rich, warm and atmospheric, with tapestries, mirrors and carvings hanging on oak-panelled walls. Spectacularly painted and gilded ceilings, similar to those at the Palace of Holyrood House, celebrate the links with France in the Auld Alliance, whilst much of the panelling was rescued from St Giles Cathedral and a Burgundian Chateau. Gilded antique leather screens, polished church candlesticks and opulent red leather seating complete the surroundings of this splendid dining location.
Dublin
Level Contributor
25 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Food very Nice, Wine very Expensive”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 27, 2013

I dined here with my wife and friends during one of the last nights of the Edinburgh Festival (Aug 2013) was was very impressed by the ambience of the place - which is literally a stones throw from Edinburgh Castle. The food was excellent (as was the choice available) and although the wine list was extensive I thought it was very overpriced for what was on offer.

I chose the Scallops to start - they were cooked to perfection. For mains we had the Lamb Wellington (for 2 people) - which again was cooked perfectly and served with Potato and a very tasty Ratatouille.

Overall was happy with the experience (for an occasion) - but do think that it was overpriced.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank AFITZDeise
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
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  • Chinese (Simplified) first
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English first
2 reviews
“superb”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 27, 2013

Sooo chuffed I finally managed to get a booking here. Superb food, superb setting, lovely atmosphere and excellent staff. Seafood platter was supreme and the selection of desserts was to die for. Was well worth the wait. Highly reccomend a visit.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Karen B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hertford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
427 reviews
285 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 183 helpful votes
“Absolutely fabulous”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 26, 2013

We booked the Witchery just for the experience , but with a little concern as we are vegetarian and were a little concerned that it may be running on past reputation as so many London restaurants have . I shouldn't of worried . We were greeted with the warmest of welcomes and assured that our requirements would not be a problem. We were immediately relaxed and soaked up the wonderful atmosphere . We had the fixed menu which was incredibly good value . The food was wonderful and the service could not be better .
It was the highlight of our 3 day break and when we return to Edinburgh will be top on the list to re visit .

  • Visited March 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Lesley S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“So disappointing.”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 26, 2013

We were so excited to go to this restaurant after hearing recommendations and reading lots of great reviews and we were extremely disappointed.

Firstly, when we arrived we were given some bread that had to have been several days old as it was hard (and tasteless). We then proceeded to order appetizers. I ordered the crab salad which was fine but a bit tasteless, I have had much better. My husband tried 3 different appetizers and didn't like any of them. The first were rubbery scallops which were served in a sort of slime. When I asked the waiter if we could change he obliged, but didn't not excuse the food. He simply said that the dish was supposed to be like that. Then we ordered a pork appetizer and when it arrived, we discoved it was cold canned meat (another dish I wouldn't expect to eat at such a highly regarded restaurant). Finally, we asked if we could change the appetizer again, to which the manager responed yes with visibile annoyance. My husband was scared to order anything else, so he settled for a salad, which arrived and was dressed quite poorly and the greens weren't very fresh.

Next, the main courses arrived. My husband ordered the filet mignon which was quite good, but it was served with green beans which were completely raw. I ordered duck which again was ok, but not very flavourful at all. Our friend ordered a risotto which was undercooked and loaded with cheese which masked any other flavour.

At this point we decided not to stick around for desert.

We paid quite a lot for a very mediocre/ bad meal. The place is quite pretty, but I would recommend only going for a drink since the food is the worst we had in Edinburgh.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
3 Thank Erica H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shrewsbury, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
29 reviews
19 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“The Secret Garden at The Witchery by the Castle is still superb”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 24, 2013 via mobile

The menu doesn't disappoint, the Food was superb and the wine list is still as extensive as last time.
The Margaux decanted was outstanding!
The Secret Garden is a really chilled fantastic place, in no way stuffy or pretentious. Probably still one of the top restaurants in Scotland

  • Visited August 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Rob H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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