Eating good quality gluten free food, mainly in Edinburgh



You know that thing, where you discover a restaurant in Edinburgh that is almost completely gluten free?  Well it happened this week.  Pho is one of the new restaurants to go into the fourth floor of the shiny new St James Quarter.  It’s right next to the Bonnie & Wild foodhall and is a dream for gluten free eating.

gluten free food edinburghI just love those places where the server says “You can have anything apart from two items on the menu”!  Check out the menu below and spot those tiny asterixes – pretty good news for a hungry coeliac eh?  Add to that, the food is all freshly cooked, very tasty and can be as zingy as you want it.

A weekday evening and we enjoyed an early evening meal for two with a few drinks and some tasty grub.  After a seriously friendly welcome, we started out with drinks and (ooh my favourite guilty treat!) prawn crackers with sweet chilli sauce – ‘prawn free’ crackers also available.  We tried the house special Phojito cocktail, which was terrific; and a no booze “gin” & tonic.  As someone who can never find a tasty substitute for an alcoholic drink, this did pretty well – I really liked it and need to find out how to make one!  My usually gluten-eating, but not tonight, non-driving husband also had a glass of Merlot to follow.

We shared two starters – and you choose your dipping sauce to go with each: really beautiful and light Summer Rolls with dipping sauce, and Pork & Lemongrass Meatballs with the most yum peanut sauce.   The only starters we couldn’t eat were the spring rolls, but with ten others to choose from, this is hardly an issue.  gluten free st james quarter

Mains were Wok Fried Noodles with an intriguing vegan chicken called ‘This is not Chicken’: a really impressive substitute and the noodles came with crunchy beansprouts and more sauce.  I checked out the house special noodle soup (not surprisingly called Pho!).  This came with prawns, chicken and beef and a fantastic beef broth which had been bubbling away for 12 hours.  The fun part is you make your own extras, with a pile of herbs, chillis (ooh these were hot!) and beensprouts to tailor your soup to taste.  On each table there are also little mixers to add, including saracha sauce, garlic, chillies and fish sauce.  So you can make your meal exactly as you want it.   Seriously plentiful, I could not finish my soup – but it was tasty and as I said before, all cooked from scratch with fresh, bright flavours.

No room for pud, my husband tried out the coffee, which is really strong and brought back memories of far eastern holidays.  The deserts are also mainly gluten free and there are some good choices – next time I would leave room for them.

This place has to be on the list for a meal out with friends or young people looking for a wide choice of gluten free food that is freshly prepared and also well cooked and presented.  It has a young vibe, but there were all ages in there – full by the time we left – enjoying the range of tasty meals on offer.  I have to go back and try the curry, which I saw someone enjoying, too.

Another highlight is the wonderful service – so friendly, welcoming and helpful.

I was kindly given this meal to try by the team at Pho, but I can see that it offers good value too.  And afterwards you can enjoy a good nose aorund the newest shopping centre in town.

pho vietnamese food edinburgh


Fourth Floor, St James Quarter, Edinburgh, EH1 3AE
0131 359 0223
Please mention Gluten Free Edinburgh when booking.