Tony Singh has been a fabulous feature of Edinburgh’s dining landscape in many forms throughout his career. His last restaurant pop-up, the insanely good Radge Chaat, is taking a break and so when I learned that his latest project, Tony’s Road Trip, would be popping up in two capital locations I couldn’t wait to try it out.
Tony’s Road Trip is serving up an eclectic mix of fusion street food dishes, most of which are priced under £10, in the Apex Grassmarket Hotel and the Apex Waterloo Place Hotel until 3 September.
Elliot’s Restaurant at the Apex Waterloo Place hotel is looking suitably colourful decked in floral garlands as we arrive and are treated to a delicious spritz cocktail.
The menu is split into meat, fish, plant, sides and puds and we are told that 2-3 dishes per person plus a side should be enough. This is street food, but I certainly wouldn’t describe these as small plates. As we were a table of five we entered into an arrangement to try as many dishes on the menu as we could. Sharing is indeed caring after all. In the interests of order I’ll run though our highlights from each section of the menu.
First up, meat. The Vuhra – a spiced lamb patty with mint and coriander sauce and tamarind dressing (£9.95) proved very popular at our table, The patty was not too fatty and cooked really well, perfect with the sweet and sour tamarind. The Chicken Tikka Pie (£8.50) was a triumph with crisp hot water pastry shell and creamy, spicy filling. But my stand out dish was the Korean BBQ Pork Belly (£9.95) marinated in sticky BBQ sauce, it wasn’t pretty but it was melt in the mouth delicious. Oh and do try the Haggis Pakora (£7.50), perfect if you like your Great Chieftain crisp and fiery.
From the fish section the unanimous favourite was the Fish Taco (£8.95), a generous portion of spiced haddock, with sour cream, fiery salsa, guac and slaw. Again, this was a really sizeable dish for the price.
We loved the crispy and colourful Indian Furr Furr crackers (£5) from the plant section. Served up with a selection of dips these are a cheerful alternative to poppadoms. The standout though was the Masala Dosa Chaat (£6.95), a traditional southern Indian crepe made from rice and lentil flour generously filled with tender potato and coriander.
On the sides menu there’s Poutine (£6), a crazy classic from Quebec that has been given a Scottish makeover. Chips and cheese with gravy, what’s not to like? But the Ngiom (£5.50), a fiery Cambodian salad with lime, chilli, herbs, nuts and cabbage is perfect for a summer evening.
Puds include Tony’s Flooda (£5.50), an Indian style milkshake, with ice cream, jelly and noodles, Churros (£6) and a Slider (£6.50) ice cream sandwiched between chocolate brownie slices. If you’re not sweet-toothed then you might prefer the Cheese and pickle toastie (£6.50).
I loved that each dish on the menu has a beer pairing recommendation to go with it from the Fierce Beer range and enjoyed the fruity rhubarb pale ale.
Tony’s Road Trip is a great casual dining experience that offers real value for money. If you’re not as enthusiastic an eater as I am you’d probably be content to choose a couple of dishes. And if you’re struggling to choose just two or three, you could always take along a gang of friends and order one of everything, just like we did.
Tony’s Road Trip is open for walk ins and bookings 12 – 10pm seven days a week until 3 September. For more information about Tony’s Road Trip visit www.apexhotels.co.uk/tonys-road-trip
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