​With a very warm and friendly atmosphere, I was welcomed like an old friend who’d just popped by.

The starters, French onion soup, immediately made me feel jealous of anyone whose maman might have made them this on a cold night. Not the incipit attempts find in British restaurants, but real, thick, warm, hearty French stuff.

The mains, beef bourguignon, was again, delicious. Served in a red hot crock pot, the perfectly cooked pieces of beef, swimming in heartwarming gravy, melted on the tongue. Apparently there are restaurants to be found in France itself which do better. But none here.

My dessert was crêpes with Grand Marnier. Warm, light and swimming with liqueur.

To finish, rather than my traditional espresso, I went for a Calvados. The typical brandy nose was finished with an immediate transportation to the orchards of Normandy. Not too much of a kick, but a gentle hint of apples.

You couldn’t do much better on a cold Edinburgh night than warm your insides with a trip to France, in a warm, rustic, rural restaurant on the Grassmarket.

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