Eating good quality gluten free food, mainly in Edinburgh


Gardener’s Cottage

The Gardener’s Cottage goes straight into my top ten gluten free restaurants in Edinburgh!

A dinner last night to celebrate a gluten-eater’s graduation saw the most delicious spread across a five course tasting menu.  Packed full of flavour, colours and with wine pairing to complement our meal, we had a really good experience and not a single issue about GF dining.

First off, The Gardener’s Cottage is a quirky little place at the foot of Royal Terrace, with its own potager garden and small rooms, tiny kitchen and group dining.  Large tables are packed full of diners side by side, but the covers are limited and it is no wonder I have failed to book early enough each time I wanted to come before.  However, with plenty of notice on the graduation date, I was able to ensure we got our space so four of us could enjoy it at last.

The wines are exceptional and interesting in the selection.  A glass of fizz to start, a Mosel (slightly too punchy for me, but not for the gluten-eating husband), Cote de Rhone, Chenin Blanc and a very punchy “chutney like” Jerez with cheese.  They really know how to surprise and delight guests.

Everyone who dines at The Gardener’s Cottage has pretty much the same, set menu, but with adaptations for dietary needs.  With a first course of tagliatelli the adaptations started straight off as I was brought a pile of tasty mussels.  I must confess, we also started with a disappointment: as with other restaurants who do it, I highly commend them for bringing GF bread and making the effort to provide it (rather than just not having a bread option).  However, at this price point it is hugely disappointing to be given slices of the kind of bread that comes on prescription or is bought in the high street.  There are so many brilliant GF options out there: Just rolls; Wheat Free Bakery Direct; even Tesco focaccia.  Surely it is not too difficult to delight at this point?

That apart, and to be honest I just let it go as I don’t eat much bread (that handy gluten-eating husband finishes it for me!), the mussels were amazing and were followed by a wonderful creamy Jerusalem artichoke soup that had a zingy bacon and chestnut topping.  Then a maincourse of pheasant with puree carrot, sprouts and celeriac was brilliant – I wanted more of the succulent and tender pheasant – it was so good!  A tart little pre-dessert of sea buckthorn and apple sorbet was a superb intermission before I opted for cheese.  The pudding of tarte tatin was not going to cut it for me and cheese is always preferable anyway.  The cheese was delicious and really well chosen, with a mix of hard, blue and soft Scottish brands.

I loved the The Gardener’s Cottage: the service was brilliant and friendly; the food was exceptional and the wines were an added treat.  I highly recommend it and will definitely go back, though I might have a pack of GF oatcakes in my bag – which would then make such a wonderful, celebratory evening pretty much perfect.


Gardener's Cottage
1 Royal Terrace Gardens, London Rd, Edinburgh EH7 5DX
0131 677 0244
Please mention Gluten Free Edinburgh when booking.