Thursday, 8 March 2012

Review: Urban Angel

There are certain times when I feel the need for a cake and wine. Sadly, most places don't sell these two in combination. Tea and cake will cut it if I can find anywhere that has a table- but there is something rather marvellous about a mid-afternoon gossip and a treat on a Saturday.

A friend introduced me to Urban Angel a year or two ago and since then it's long opening hours and off-the-beaten-track-from-the-rest-of-town locations have made it perfect for catching up with friends. I love that I can pop in for a cup of coffee after work, and not feel guilty for not eating a meal.
My friend and I were feeling particularly in need of refreshment, so went for a glass of wine and a treat each. One chocolate nut brownie, one plum and frangipane tart. Both came served with a dollop of whipped cream and a rather nice berry compote- this wasn't so necessary for the frangipane, but they really set the brownie off. It was definatly chocolatey, but verging on dry and crumbly - not a bit of goo in sight, even if the portion was generous. Without the extras it may have been dry, which is never good for a brownie. The frangipane on the other hand probably didn't need the extras. The pastry was light and crumbly, and the filling somehow both rich and light - almondy fruity perfection. The roasted fruit baked in was absolutely delicious, still slightly tart.

There are pro and cons to Urban Angel. I like their cakes and wine. They're tasty. They're open at non-standard times, have a nice light and airy atmosphere, and the staff have been accommodating when a friend with allergies asked about ingredients and substitutions. I like that their ethos is to use as many local ingredients as possible, and to aim for organic meat and free range eggs. I like that they recycle.
I don't like that our treats were £5.50. Each. Yes, really. The wine was restaurant prices - £3.80 for a small (175ml) glass and £5.30 for a large (250ml) glass. For comparison, a pot of fair trade tea is £2.20.
This is a place to have a treat, rather than a regular coffee.

Afternoon refreshments for two, including a small glass of wine each: £18.60.

Urban Angel - 121 Hanover Street and 1 Forth Street, Edinburgh.

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