Review: The Fishmarket, Newhaven, Edinburgh

NEW RESTAURANT OPENINGS don’t create more anticipation than this, simply because The Fishmarket sits right outside my front door. I’ve watched it transform from the old building that has served Newhaven for generations to this swish new chip shop-cum-sit-in restaurant.  I used to sigh when tourists would disembark from the ferry and head into Brewers Fayre for some generic chain grub that would establish their first impressions of Scottish cuisine.

Thankfully, Roy Brett, chef patron of the renowned Ondine seafood restaurant, has collaborated with his trusty suppliers at Welch Fishmongers to offer visitors and locals alike a chance to sample the wonders of our seas.  A proud advocate of sustainable and seasonal food, Brett’s commitment alongside one of the capital’s most reputable fish merchants will surely be a winning formula.
Sarah and I were literally just off the plane, straight to The Fishmarket door after arriving back from a culinary trip to Istanbul. The view we enjoyed of the Bosphorus with huge mosques and colourful buildings was like something from a Monet painting, but Newhaven Harbour is pretty special itself.

The restaurant interior respects the Victorian history of the original building, with classy tiles adorning the walls and high ceilings offering a sense of space.  But this really is all about that view of the lighthouse, Forth bridges, and the water over to Fife – surely one of the most photographed skylines in Edinburgh.

The sit-down menu will have to wait for another day, as today was all about the takeaway options. Word had spread as the queue was seven or eight long when I arrived, and the dining room area was packed. A staff member came out and started taking orders from the queue, rather than waiting for each punter to reach the service area – clear signs of an experienced operator right there.

The menu offers haddock, cod, scampi, lemon sole, and sole goujons as well as an intriguing fish burger (see website for full menu). You can select from standard, large or whale-sized portions, of which we opted for the standard-sized traditional haddock supper priced at £7.
Made to order, the batter was light and crisp with the haddock perfectly cooked. Portion size was spot on for our needs, but if you do have a bigger appetite I’d recommend ordering one of the bigger options. The chips were delicious; you could tell that the potatoes were of good quality and freshly made.  A wedge of lemon was offered to add acidity and the tartar sauce (£1), made in-house I’d bet, was particularly good.They had sold out of mushy peas, which, though disappointing, was fully understandable given the apparent volumes being catered for.

Lola enjoyed the fish
An impressive start to life down here in Newhaven given the demand from the outset. This will surely offer tourists an exceptional experience of our national dish and keep the demanding Edinburgh public happy at the same time.  A positive addition to our capital's gastronomic scene.

Phone: (0131) 552 8262

Address: 23A Pier Place, Newhaven, Edinburgh EH6 4LP

Opening Hours: 1am - 10pm everyday