I was invited to eat dinner with James, founder of The Whitby Guide at the Edge restaurant in Whitby in order to write a review. I had no idea when I arrived I was in for such a treat.
I used to work as a chef in Sydney, Australia. In my time I have eaten some of the best seafood in the world and enjoyed many different dining experiences. I know what goes on in kitchens and can spot a flawed menu or discouraging signs a mile off.
The Edge restaurant on Bridge St in Whitby showed nothing but excellence in every way. The service was fantastic. Attentive but without being intrusive. We sat upstairs and our waiter Adrian must have had his workout coming up and down to enquire if or when we were ready to order, or whether we would now like our next course. He was delightful.
The menu was well planned and inspired, with plenty of choice but not too much. I always say beware any restaurant where the menu is huge. Never a good sign. I’ve worked in such places where food turnover is dubious and enormous amounts of prepped food sit in buckets in fridges for far too long. I have also eaten in restaurants that promise so much, where the prices are high and everything seems elegant and upmarket, only to be disappointed by a stylised plate of over rich or less than tasty cuisine.
The Edge is none of these. This menu shouts fresh, modern, manageable, innovative. A wonderful list of starters offers mouthwatering and imaginative choice. The mains combine a number of high quality, enticing seafood or meat options, plus several delightful alternatives for vegetarians. As for desserts, well, get ready for 7th heaven.
This was food showing itself off. I was stunned at the gorgeous presentation of the starter. We decided to share half a dozen oysters, not wishing to be too greedy, but after the first one went down I found myself wishing we had ordered at least a dozen. Even for these few delicious morsels they appeared on plates decorated with ice, salad, colours that turned the plates into artwork. They say you eat with your eyes. The Edge has nailed this.
The oysters were sweet, fresher than fresh and as good as any oyster I ate in Australia. That is a high compliment. We ate them virgin, battered, adding lemon, tabasco. They were heavenly, truly.
For the main I ordered salmon fillet with clams, king prawns, a smatter of prawn bisque and samphire with seasonal vegetables. Every element was perfect. They really know how to cook seafood to a high standard here. James ordered a stunning casserole of different varieties of fresh and smoked fish, mussels, prawns, under a crust of breadcrumbs and smoked salmon. Again, to die for.
We didn’t order meat but I could see that for anyone who might like that option, the quality of what was on offer was fantastic. From a simple burger to a fillet steak, quality had been prioritised. Equally, for vegetarians the choices were good.
We met at 5 pm and what I had imagined as an early supper, out by 7 latest, turned into a long, delightful evening. Pacing ourselves to chat between courses. The portions are perfectly measured. Neither too large or too small but there is no way you could leave feeling hungry even if you only had a main course.
I have to say I nearly gave up when asked to order a dessert. By now buttons were being undone. By now I was leaning back in satisfaction, replete, warm and full. But heck. We were there to do a review so we ordered two desserts and I was by then hoping that James would do them justice.
But when they arrived and I cracked the golden sugar crust on the creme brulee, ate the first vanilla rich, light and silky spoonful, I was smitten. The plate was covered with raspberry coulis, plenty of it, with cream and berries. Then I dived into what I can only describe as chocolate heaven. A dense chocolate pudding on a biscuit base covered in whipped cream, fresh berries and cherry compote. Gosh I can’t remember the name of it now but you’ve got to try it – best choc pud ever. Funnily enough the combination of the two puddings took it to a whole other level.
We ended up being the last to leave – rather embarrassing as we finally staggered out into a dark street, uttering a thousand thank yous, after what turned out to be one of the best dining experiences I have had in years.
Coffee. Drinks. Food. Service. All five star. Well done Edge. I will be back. There are many places to eat in Whitby but if you will excuse the pun, this place really does have the edge. Highly recommended.
Rose Rylands is an award winning storyteller and runs organized group walks with Guided Walking Tours of Whitby, a Whitby Ghost Walk, plus regular dates for the Robin Hood’s Bay Ghost Walk. She leads guided hikes in the National Park and also brings the Tour to the Door with storytelling events in holiday homes and other local venues. Working with visitors, groups, schools and international students, check out https://www.whitbystoryteller.co.uk for more details