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Cafe Marlayne

French Restaurant

3.9 out of 5 3.9/5 from 11 reviews (add your opinion)

76 Thistle Street
New Town
Edinburgh
EH2 1EN

Phone: 0131 226 2230

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Price: £££
Licensed: Yes
BYOB: No
Pre-Theatre: No

Takeaway: No

Opening Hours:
Unknown.

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Tags: cafemarlayne restaurant licensed french cafemarlayne

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11 user reviews:

andy's image

4.5 from andy (83%) on July 17th, 2007 (10 years ago)

Cafe Marlayne, 76 Thistle Street, EH2 1EN, Edinburgh

Little gem of a restaurant slightly hidden away in the New Town on Thistle Street. Very small - cosy verging on cramped. The night we went (a Tuesday) we hadn't booked but were lucky to get a table - there are only 8. While we were there they had to turn a couple away - make sure you book, even on supposedly quiet nights.

Menu is largely dominated by fish. I had mussels to start and then monkfish. Both were excellent. The monkfish dish was the tastiest dish I've eaten for a while. The menu changes daily and is well priced. Most expensive main was under £15 with the average probably £13.

Only thing that let them down slightly was that one of the two waitresses was a bit short. In manner, not stature. A shame, but the food more than made up for it.

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4.5 from nettles (81%) on July 20th, 2008 (9 years ago)

Cafe Marlayne, 76 Thistle Street, EH2 1EN, Edinburgh

A great intimate place hidden away on Thistle Street. Simple decor and lovely handwritten menus which I hear change quite often but after reading Andy's review, I think I had the same menu as him! So, it doesnt change everyday but certainly often enough for the joint not to invest in printed menus.

For starters my partner and I shared the scallops with boidon noir (black sausage) which I wasnt sure about the pairing but worked beautifully. I was a bit upset after we had finished it to see the same dish going out with the roe still attached to the scallops as ours hadnt been so luxuriously adorned. The basil vinegrette was lovely and fresh and the asparagus a nice touch.

For our mains my partner had the whole seabass and I had the monkfish. Monkfish is one of my favourites and I was pleased that it wasnt overcooked to a rubbery texture as you so often get. The fish was a large piece still on the big tail bone and cooked to perfection with a nice crust where it had been seared. The fish came with a nice tapenade and was topped with roasted red peppers that I thought tasted nice but didnt add much to the dish. My partners fish was delicately flavoured and cooked as nice as my monkfish.

All of the mains come with a side of veggies which was served for two in a bowl and was pleasantly surprised by the obvious attention to the veggies. Each obviously cooked separately and much attention paid to each. On the bottom were luxirious potatoes cooked in what I can guess was cream, butter, garlic and a healthy dose of black pepper. One top some of the sweetest carrots, steamed broccoli, and fine string beans.

Dinner we finished off with cappuccino but next time will have to save room for dessert as the hand written board looked to good to pass up for next time!

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4 from ddcook (52%) on September 14th, 2007 (10 years ago)

Cafe Marlayne, 76 Thistle Street, EH2 1EN, Edinburgh

Well that was a tasty meal! The atmosphere in this place is fantastic, small, cosy, but not too hot or not too noisy from being squashed into such a dinky place. Menu has enough selection to keep you interested if you go back several times but not so much that it overwhelms you. My Mussels to start were fantastic, my dining partners pigeon salad equally tasty with the pigeon perfectly cooked to be moist and tasty. Main, my steak was good though not outstanding and I have had better in town, ordered rare it was probably closer to medium/rare, ordering Rare in a French restaurant I expected it to be spot on. The lamb however was fantastic, so full of flavour and perfectly cooked. Accompanying it all was some extremely tasty and flavoursome fresh veg, excellent stuff. We were so full from 2 excellent course that we could only stretch to sharing a creme brulee for desert, which was excellent and nice and crispy up top. Great wine menu too!

Overall would have been a higher rating but the fact my steak was not quite as rare as I would have expected and I have had better steaks for the same money elsewhere in Edinburgh drags it down slightly but in no way stops me wanting to go back for more.

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4.5 from Bryan (42%) on November 20th, 2008 (8 years ago)

Cafe Marlayne, 76 Thistle Street, EH2 1EN, Edinburgh

Dinner for two here last night. It was nicely busy for a boring old Wednesday.

My partner is less well-endowed stomachwise than me so only I had a starter. It was Grilled Raclette with new potatoes and parma ham and gherkins. It looked pretty odd to be honest but was very tasty.

I had the Guinea Fowl served with black pudding and asparagus; she had the steak (medium! I nearly choked) served with mushrooms. The main courses came with lots of vegetables - broccoli, carrot (nicely firm), green beans and gorgeous Tatties Dauphinoise. I could have eaten a pot of them and been perfectly happy.

My Guinea Fowl was beautiful, lovely and moist and the black pudding and asparagus complemented it well. The steak was good although it's difficult to tell when it's been so shamefully overcooked.

We had a bottle of excellent Pinot Noir (£18.80) and I had a coffee.

Total bill £52 which I thought was excellent value. I've certainly eaten less well for much more on many occasions.

Service was friendly and laid-back. We were neither rushed nor left waiting at any point.

I know I'm going to go again and again.

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4.5 from rosco (27%) on April 24th, 2009 (8 years ago)

Cafe Marlayne, 76 Thistle Street, EH2 1EN, Edinburgh

What an absolute gem, hidden off the main thoroughfare a little but well worth seeking out (and let's face it, it's not exactly out of the way).

Lovely relaxed atmosphere, hand-written menus and a nice rustic feel make you feel right at home in the small dining area. But what they lack in size they more than make up for in flavour and generosity. I have received the most amazing food, with portions serving no regard to belt holes. I have recommended this place countless times, and always get back thanks for doing so. I will always come back (the same goes for the slightly larger one on Fish Market Close), looking forward to each visit with much anticipation, and I am certain that i will never be disappointed, I never have been yet.

This would be my outright favourite restaurant in the city if I didn't live so far away from it (and next to another favourite). This review covers my feelings for both Cafe Marlaynes.

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4 from julieadair (22%) on March 10th, 2008 (9 years ago)

Cafe Marlayne, 76 Thistle Street, EH2 1EN, Edinburgh

There's a real foodie haven in this stretch of Thistle Street - and even behind it, if you count the lane and Cafe St Honore. Cafe Marlayne is a wee gem. Tiny but friendly and real value for money in terms of the food, its quality and the range of the winelist. Booking essential but, if you can't get in, and are happy to head into the Old Town, there's another - slightly larger - version just off the Royal Mile.

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5 from pops (13%) on July 23rd, 2007 (10 years ago)

Cafe Marlayne, 76 Thistle Street, EH2 1EN, Edinburgh

My favourite restaurant in Edinburgh. Cosy, intimate atmosphere and great food. Would recommend most dishes although personal favourites are the steak or the lamb... followed by the sensational key lime pie! Only complaint is the food is so good I often cant move after I've been there through eating so much :) Would definitely book in advance. Closed Mondays. Very reasonably priced. Much prefer the Thistle St restaurant to the one off the Royal Mile and have heard similar comments from a few people.

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4.5 from James Mc (12%) on October 31st, 2008 (8 years ago)

Cafe Marlayne, 76 Thistle Street, EH2 1EN, Edinburgh

Took my wife for a birthday treat and boy was it good and given it is in the city it was reasonably priced too. You will have read that his place is small but that takes nothing away from the great hand written menu or the standard to which they provide it at. I am not easily pleased in general nor do I eat out that often, that's why when I do I try to make sure that I pick a good place and for me this will not disappoint.

Just my two cents but check it out for yourself.

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2 from eve (12%) on February 15th, 2009 (8 years ago)

Cafe Marlayne, 76 Thistle Street, EH2 1EN, Edinburgh

Ate here with my husband on valentines night, I know it's supposed to be romantic but the place was so dark I thought there had been power cut. This put me off as did the cheap paper napkins, think Kleenex tissues have more body. We skipped a starter and ordered mature ribeye steak. My husband's steak was fine and mine was full of fat and grissle. I returned it and was cooked a fresh one which was not a great deal better. My husband had a sweet of creme brulee which he thought was ok, by this time I was desperate to leave, get home and clean my teeth from the grease that seemed to be sticking to my palette, which I can only think was because food had been cooked in cheap oil. Will not be in a rush to return.

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4.5 from david thomson (12%) on July 27th, 2010 (7 years ago)

Cafe Marlayne, 76 Thistle Street, EH2 1EN, Edinburgh

Just had a great lunch there today 26th July 2010... food was great, atmosphere great, staff and service great... cannot fault it in any way... will definitely be back soon...

PS. food is a while in coming but don't be impatient as it is great when it comes.

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1 from VictoriaMillar (7%) on August 14th, 2011 (6 years ago)

Cafe Marlayne, 76 Thistle Street, EH2 1EN, Edinburgh

Booked this restaurant in June for 13th August! After running through the rain from the book festival we found that they did not have our booking! I couldn't believe it as this is the 2nd time this has happened to us! When we booked we made sure it was the Thistle Street branch and called back to confirm booking after having been caught out before! Bookers beware!

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