Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Review: Juniper

Friday nights are usually a bit of a washout for me, which is a shame because really they should be celebrated. After all, for most of us (I know, I know, not all of us) they mark The Start Of The Weekend. They should not be spent watching films in my pyjamas and falling asleep on the sofa before 10pm, which ironically tends to be the earliest night I get all week. 
I’ve been hearing murmurings about Juniper, and it’s neighbouring restaurant Twenty Princes Street for a while, but it never really struck me as somewhere to head to (I am far too much a creature of habit for my own good) until a friend commented on how much she liked it there for an after work drink. A little bit of menu perving, a perusal of the cocktail list, and the discovery of their Friday Fondue, it was firmly on the list. A plan was formed. February Friday Fondue would be had.
I emailed ahead and asked for a window table so that we could enjoy the view of the city skyline, which was probably a good idea as by 5.30, it was fairly busy.
Incredible view of the skyline
We perused the drinks menu, raised an eyebrow at the use of whiskey-with-an-e above the Scotch list, and were slightly overwhelmed by the range of cocktails. We decided to be awkward and went off menu to order a couple of our favourite classics - an Aviation and a Whiskey Sour. 
The fondue dipping agents
Our drinks didn't take long, and the fondue arrived shortly afterwards. We had opted for a chilli and Innis and Gunn infused cheesy sauce (the alternative cheesy option being cider and bacon) which was tasty, but not obviously infused with such a strong tasting beer. The portion of sauce was generous - no worries about running out of cheese before you've finished the crudités and dipping treats. The dipping treats were perfect - a range of crunchy veg and soft meats and fish, rather than the cheap bread and potatoes I had expected to be filling up on (note: if you're ravenous, order a side of chips for a carbohydrate hit).
The fondue was devoured, we were happy, and decided to pick another cocktail for pudding. The mister was unadventurous and opted for the same again, but I was in the mood for something sweeter, and braved the Caramel-Saltra from the menu. 
It was tasty, but I wasn't convinved about Genever as the spirit - it was a bit of a harsh aftertaste, and is traditionally drank neat or with water. I got the impression that this was a cocktail which was trying a bit too hard to be interesting. The little bottle was a sweet presentation tool, but as the mister pointed out (he's a former bar manager, and therefore a bit picky with his cocktails) it meant that I lost some of the effect of the cocktail itself, as the smell and colour were hidden.

We stumbled back down the stairs into the chilly air, slightly tipsy, slightly cheese-drunk. An excellent start to the weekend, one I have no doubt we'll be repeating, although possibly sipping wine instead of cocktails.

Four cocktails and fondue for two: £46
(Apparently you get a discretionary 20% discount for wearing your workwear, but we seemed to miss out on that, presumably as neither of us wear suits to work).

20 Princes Street
Rubbish phone pictures by me - top picture from the Juniper website.


  1. This place could re-convert M to fondue so I think we need to head down - stealing your idea of booking first!

  2. Oooh this looks good! I love both cocktails and fondue! Yum!