Referral from July 2, The food's great, and it's nice to sit out in Nicholson Square and munch away, especially when the sun's out and the local junkies are fighting with each other.
The drivers came from near and far, reviewers arrived toting bags of steaming food, we tasted and compared and debated and got sticky fingerprints over the menus.
When it was all done, dusted, digested and put into the correct recycling bins we pulled together the reviews, hitlists and tiplists. Across Edinburgh there are hundreds of takeaway operations. We tried to pick out the places that offered the best takeaway service and the best food, taking into consideration both established restaurants and takeaway-only operations.
Given that one of the great benefits of buying a takeaway is that hot food arrives on your doorstep, we gave priority to places that delivered, but we also covered some venues that only offered collection options.
For this round-up we decided not to cover places focused on food that's generally taken away at lunchtime soup and sandwiches, baked potatoes , or street food, as that's generally designed to be eaten on the street rather than at home.
For a genre that's so popular, the recurring message from our reviewers was that the standard of takeaway food across Edinburgh isn't particularly high. Most enthusiasm was generated by takeaway operations offering something different - African or Malaysian food, for example, or those places making a clear effort to present clean tasting, healthy food.
In this vein a few sushi venues are offering their speciality at prices that compare favourably with traditional Indian or Chinese carry outs. Alongside the mediocre quality of the food, our hopes were rarely buoyed by looking at yet another long, uninspiring menus filled with the usual suspects.
The gradual spread of online ordering is a welcome trend while it works ; even in the course of our carefully planned Big Takeaway various orders and delivery arrangements came unstuck trying to cross language barriers. Some delivery operations have got their act together, and are winning custom for it. In the end, many of us find it more reliable to walk down to the best of the local restaurants to collect, though even here not all food travels well.
Noodles and anything deep fried are particularly susceptible to sweat unpleasantly if left for any length of time in a takeaway box or bag. Not all takeaways are rubbish, but we're increasingly aware of how much rubbish they generate.
The right packaging can help food travel and look better, as well as stay warm, but the sheer volume of cardboard, foil, paper and plastic used by the takeaway industry is startling. There was little evidence of recycled or compostable packaging among the venues we covered. As it was, we just tried to avoid catching the eye of the bin-man the morning after the Big Takeaway. Leith Mon—Thu 6—10pm; Fri 6— Morrison St collection only.
Delivery from Leith within city bypass. For the uninitiated though, that means delicious filled dumplings, either boiled Jiao Zi or fried Guo Tie , a number of unusual but alluring vegetarian selections like shredded potato salad with garlic, coriander and sesame oil plus lashings of flavoured noodles. The takeaway service — which includes generous meal-deals and discounts for members — follows the same winning formula as the restaurants.
Ordering is based on a mix and match premise where the customer chooses from a burrito, fajita, burrito bowl, quesadillas or soft tacos. Next comes the filling, which includes chill-citrus marinated Red Tractor chicken, slow-cooked pork smothered in a salsa verde, or just plain black beans.
Alternatively, a steak burrito bowl contains thick slices of beef, rice, piquant peppers and spicy beans. A vegetarian soft taco is enlivened by a creamy guacamole and chargrilled peppers. A fuller Chinese menu is also present and correct, but with sushi this good, why would ya? Spanking fresh, pretty dragon rolls, salmon nigiri, avocado maki and the like, washed down with a balanced, salty-savoury hit of miso soup is going to make your tummy very happy.
For fries and burgers, there's a place called No 1 Kebab, and they're just great. They put the effort in and take pride in making quality food, and you can taste it. For curry, the real Mosque Kitchen that is, the one next to the Mosque, with a tent is terrific. The food's great, and it's nice to sit out in Nicholson Square and munch away, especially when the sun's out and the local junkies are fighting with each other. Random alternative when you're just fancying a snack however; Sainsbury's now do these little pizza pastry things.
I usually get a couple whenever I'm passing through the West End, even if I'm not hungry. Yep, that was probably me. I find it so rare to find a takeaway that gives a measurable volume of a shit about their food in this city that I do tend to go on about it a bit when I finally come across them.
Wait what, there are two Mosque Kitchens? I've always gone to the big one on the corner, I thought the other one was just the takeaway version of the same place. Well, I know what I'm having for my tea today now! The Mosque Kitchen on the corner does actually have a takeaway part - there's a small takeaway next to the bank facing Nicholson Square which is really just a shop front to the Corner Mosque Kitchen's kitchen, and it's terrible.
I've been in twice in the past few months, first time I got a kebab which was very large for the money, but bland, and served by someone who couldn't have been more disinterested. Second time, I waited 45 minutes for a pizza. The guy burned the first one to a blackened crisp, and overcooked the second one as well. Make your way over to the real Mosque Kitchen with the tents if it's warm and sunny, or walk around the building to sit in at the Aroma Cafe side of it if the weather's not so good.
It's great, especially for the price. Literally the best burger I've had and a great selection of interesting beers. A generic input from me: Sites like Just Eat is a good place to find reviews for takeaways. I know that not all of them are listed in there and probably some of the reviews are planted but it will give you an idea.
Desi Pakwan is incredible - their spicy chicken burger is superb never mind the mouth watering curries. The chicken wings are worth murdering for.
Javits in Granton is great for pretty much everything pizzas, kebabs, normally chippy stuff etc. I actually prefer the pizzas from there compared to domino's etc. Really nice pizza, wood fired, Giro d Italia really nice, a different ham and cheese every slide. Who would've thought Edinburgh would have such great Italian food?! The tricolore pizza and quadrelli pasta square shaped ravioli stuffed with braised beef with a mushroom sauce were both standouts. Love the pastries and little cakes, we also bought some macaroons and took them to the top of camera obscura to eat.
Pastries are great, and the coffee is good. Very poor and expensive coffee. Tasty filter coffee and tarts are delicious! Amazing breakfast, friendly staff, chilled vibes and exceptional coffee. Much better than the majority of chippys. Perfect for those late night food runs. One of those rare Chinese takeaways that doesn't leave a film of grease covering the roof of your mouth. Generous portions that's not greasy nor salty.. Lovely modern western ambience without the usual OTT Chinese deco.
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