Understated sophistication are the bywords of this Edinburgh gem. Just beyond the trodden Royal Mile and the Festival’s Hub HQ, Thai Orchid is tranquil, softly lit and ready to please. This family business emphasises a personal touch, from the décor detailed with fresh orchids, to the warmth of the staff and a menu that extends well beyond the standard offerings of Thai food in the UK. More upmarket Bangkok than central Scotland, seua rong hai, a spicy grilled sirloin, balances the pink beef with an edge of chilli, cleansing mint, coriander and lime.

Seafood courses, particularly the prawns, are fantastically fresh and cooked to perfection. Offerings such as the prawn yum, a piquant and refreshing Thai salad served at room temperature, counter the many rich, creamy curries vying for selection. Vegetarians will find various bean curd and vegetable curries as well as sweet potato and papaya based dishes to choose from. If orders take a bit of time it’s because the chef is committed to quality over speed and succeeds with both elegance and style.

www.list.co.uk – From the 2010 Eating & Drinking guide