104 Hanover Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1DR
0131 220 5155
After a rather tasty visit to The Dogs during a Christmas shopping mission, it was obvious that I’d have to give the other two restaurants in the Dogs trilogy a chance. So when Edinburgh singer songwriter (and guest blogger) Colin Asquith invited me out for lunch last Friday, and suggested Amore Dogs, how could I say no?
From their name Amore Dogs risk coming across as yet another Italian restaurant: something Hanover Street certainly doesn’t need. But Amore Dogs set themselves apart from their competition by serving what ‘Italian American’ style food. The genre of food you find in such dens of iniquity as Frankie & Bennies, TGI Fridays, and The Filling Station. I’m really not the biggest fan of any of these restaurants, I find that they take delicious sounding food and suck all of the potential out of it.
So I was curious to find out if The Dogs could get it right.
Forgive me for sounding shallow, but I far prefer the decor in Amore Dogs. The Dogs, upstairs, had the feeling that it had just been thrown together by a group of squatters. Amore Dogs still has a laid back air but feels a bit more ‘together’.
I was feeling rather peckish and had been glancing at the menu all morning, via their website. I’d been drinking the old vino rouge the night before, and felt like something carbalicious was in order. After swithering between a few tasty options, I eventually settled for the good old cheeseburger. Colin ordered the coleyslaw burger (featuring battered coley fish and coleslaw) which I had almost ordered too. With our burgers we asked for a portion of chips, each, which costs extra.
We blethered for a bit and soon our food was presented. No major complaints, but a few tiny moans. The chips were alright, but they weren’t quite perfect. Surprisingly I preferred the chips at GBK, and The Constitution. I opened my burger for a look inside and ended up scraping off a few of the onions; obviously this is a preference point, and if I hadn’t had meetings in the afternoon I might have left them.
The burger was pretty tasty; just the right amount of mayo, fresh tomato and lettuce, and the cheese was perfectly melted. However, I did lament that the bun wasn’t quite strong enough to hold it all together. The bread tore a few times, and I had to polish it off with my knife and fork.
Normally I don’t eat dessert at lunchtime: I’m not a glutton. But the mains were so pleasing and the wine had gone to my head. I felt that the hangover demons hadn’t quite been satisfied, so I ordered a tiramisu and Colin ordered a banoffee sundae.
I had a wee taste of his sundae, and surprisingly it struck me as being very banana-y and cream-y. Shock horror, eh? I imagine it would be a lovely alternative to a banoffee pie.
The tiramisu was lovely, but there wasn’t much to separate it from other lovely tiramisus I’ve had elsewhere (such as La Favorita’s takeaway section. Yes, I order takeaway dessert, what of it?).
I’m a bit torn when it comes to Amore Dogs. On the one hand, I demolished my food and even had dessert. This must mean that it was brilliant, right? It’s a far better restaurant than the cahins that offer the same style of fare. On the other hand I didn’t feel like my food really stood out: It wasn’t one of the worst meals I’ve had but it wasn’t one of the best either.
I guess you could say I just didn’t feel the love.
Next up: Sea Dogs!