La Tasca (Edinburgh)

Location: Edinburgh, Scotland
Address: 9 South Charlotte Street
Website: www.latascakitchen.co.uk
Type of Meal: Dinner 
 



La Tasca isn’t anything fancy, but if you’re looking for reasonable prices and a low-key but not family restaurant environment, this UK chain is a great option. The menu is quite extensive with tapas, paellas, whole fish and simple salads; items we tried are unfussy and reminiscent of the tastes of Spain.
One of the better dishes of the night was the calamares (£4.60) a simple fried calamari dish.  Cut into thicker slices the squid tastes fresh and tender.  The crust is crispy and thin with just some sea salt, although the dish does have a spicy aioli sauce on the side if you need a bit more flavour.


The langostinos (£5.95) was a good value dish comprised of four large tiger prawns – heads on for some who may be squeamish.  Grilled on a flat top so that juices are retained but without charring the shell, the prawn is delicious and maintains its natural flavours.    
A dish with some kick were the empanadas de carne (£4.35) filled with spicy ground beef and regato cheese wrapped in a crunchy yet soft coating.
If you want something more filling the flatbread for two (£6.95) may be the dish for you – certainly sufficient for us to share even amongst a table of four.  Arriving on a wooden platter the bread is not exactly flat but rather like a thick crust vegetarian pizza. Topped with roast peppers, tomatoes, cheese and onion it’s a dish built for sustenance.
The gratinado verduras (£3.75) is for individuals who like their vegetables hidden under a layer of cheese and mixed into cream.  Garlicky creamed spinach sits on the bottom with a scalloped potato layer on top.
After my visit to La Tasca, I’ve learnt that “salsa” essentially translates to “sauce” - not the tomato Old El Paso variety available in mild, medium and hot but just “sauce”.  When the pollo con salsa (£4.95) arrived we were a little surprised that the chicken was sitting in a creamy sherry sauce, we should read the menu carefully. But, the dish was still good with the pieces of white meat mixed with mushrooms.
I enjoyed the variety of salads on their menu; by this point in the trip I was craving something simple and healthy. We ordered a regular green house salad (£2.95) as well as the beetroot, carrot and butternut squash salad (£4.80). Personally, I enjoyed the simple green salad more as I’m not a huge fan of sweet squash dishes.
La Tasca has a fair variety of beers and wine on their menu. Choice is abundant with wines offered in 125ml, 250ml, half bottle and full bottle options with a 250ml will glass setting you back about £6. So, if you’re tired after walking through Old or New Town, this is a good choice to stop for a bite where you can likely comfortably feed two with £20 without having to eat a burger.
Overall mark - 7 out of 10


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Gastro World's Grading System
  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • 6 - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!
  •   
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