Spice up the Festival
It’s festival time again and Edinburgh is jumping – we meandered our way through the streets of the old town down to the Apex International, not to be confused with the Apex City of Edinburgh Hotel a few doors down, the same road for some special grub as Tony Singh has set up residence here for the duration of the festival serving up variations on street food from around the world.
Keeping in line with the street food vibe, there is no metal cutlery here but a popcorn tub full of plastic cutlery and no napkins, instead a roll of kitchen towel is provided. We were told that the majority were medium spicy but we found that all but one of our choices were mild so don’t be put off if you’re not into spicy food – and there is hot sauce on the table should you want it hotter.
There’s a good variety of dishes and in typical tapas/small plates-style we picked 6 between us.
The dishes come out when they’re reading and here they are (in the order they arrived):
Soft shell crab in steamed bun £10
We do love soft shell crab and it was soft with a crispy coating. It was served in a doughy Korean-style bun with a zingy citric salad to compliment the mango and basil on and in the bun. It was tasty but £10?
Haggis Pakora £6.50
We were told this was pakora with a twist, maybe in Edinburgh but we eat these all the time in Glasgow (as well as black pudding pakoraO) 😉 …ah, they also had neeps and tatties under the batter which did make them that little bit different, and they were very tasty. Moist inside and a crisp outside – perfect pakora. They were also served with a sweet chutney-like dip (tamarind?) and a really lovely mint raita.
Korean Burrito £9.50
A huge big messy-looking burrito – there was a lot of food here, it tasted smokey with soft flak haddock, with beansprouts and fermented kimchee umami goodness on the side.
Proper pork ribs with a Jura Superstition BBQ glaze £8.95
Soft with melting fatty pork deliciousness. The glaze was more sweet than your traditional fake smokey BBQness. Could quite easily have eaten another one or two….
CTP (Chicken tikka pie) £7.50
Piping hot, and easily the spiciest thing we had. Big chunks of chicken smothered in a spicy sauce. Amazing. We had been told by @bakersbunny that Tony’s pies were good. We didn’t realise this good! Mrs Foodie utilised her World Scotch Pie Award pie judging criteria to say that she was impressed by the fill of the pie.
Punjabi BBQ Sweetcorn £4.95
Sweetcorn cooked well – not squishy with bite and the the lime, black salt and coriander made for a tangy glaze.
Coated in spices – smelled like cumin! Sweet sugary with choice of dip, dark chocolate or salted caramel. Both dips were lovely going well with the crispy but fluffy churros.
The Slider £6
Soft brownie which was a bit dry but it came with plenty of ice-cream and monkey blood AKA raspberry sauce. Would have been better if the brownie was hot but then the monkey blood would be everywhere!
We were stuffed. Overall inventive and fun and we got to meet the man himself.
It’s the first time we’ve been in the Apex international, from outside it doesn’t look like much but the restaurant/bar space is open, colourful and modern. Staff were knowledgeable and chatty. If you happen to be in the old town for a show then it would be worthwhile popping in before this pop-up pops off at the end of August.
+ Good selection of dishes
+ Tasty food
+ Friendly, helpful staff
+ Good location for festival shows
+ Clean toilets
– A few minor criticisms of food but overall top job.
We received a complimentary meal but this did not influence our review (plus no one seemed to know who we were until the end anyway!)