How come I haven’t discovered this gem before now? After a wasted morning waiting for someone I was due to interview who didn’t bother to turn up (he and his business shall remain nameless for now as I am not a bitter person) I meandered back through Nottingham’s Bohemian quarter – Hockley – and stumbled upon Edin’s Kitchen. Having heard good things about it, I decided on an opportunistic lunch.
Quietly unassuming on the outside, Edin’s Kitchen is one of those hidden gems you stumble across and, once inside, feel as if you’ve just become part of a little secret. Anyone watch “Goodnight Sweetheart”…where the chap walks through a wall and finds himself in wartime London? Well walking into Edin’s felt a bit like walking into a Parisienne back-street cafe that only the locals know, and then feeling properly pleased with yourself.
Edin’s is set in a former jeweller’s shop and many of the original features remain – the glass display cabinets, wooden window shutters and even the glass panel at the rear (that now has the kitchen behind it) where you can imagine the jeweller poring over his diamond settings. Even the fascia board outside still bears the jeweller’s name. All those efforts many places make to feel all “shabby chic”, but you still can’t beat the real thing.
When I popped in, there was great some great jazz and blues playing on the sound system, the quirky décor was gently lit by a host of candles and the vibe was quietly buzzy, from the boho crowd to ladies that lunch, to single diners.
Edin’s serves an eclectic mix of European and global dishes – Tempura Zucchini flowers with Tabouleh, whole baked camembert, a full English or continental breakfast,, Lincolnshire Sausages with a spicy lentil stew, Lamb Tagine or roasted butternut squash and asparagus salad.
I went with a (huge) bowl of tomato and basil soup, which was superb and if I hadn’t had to get on with my day, I would happily have sat there on my own (did not feel in the least uncomfortable with that either, as it was a bit like sitting in someone’s family kitchen), ordered a bottle of white, kicked off my shoes and whiled away the afternoon. It also helps that Edin’s is extremely good value, with a 2 course lunch for under £8.
I’m not normally one for gushing as you know, and I have heard that there can be some exuberant Latin temperaments at play on occasion (if you’ll forgive the post-Brexit style generalisation), but none were in evidence when I visited and I strongly suggest you give it go if you’re passing.