Pan Asian·
Gold Award

SquareMeal Review of Noto

Gold Award

Noto is the second restaurant from chef Stuart Ralston, who also operates tasting menu restaurant Aizle. Found on a chic street in the New Town, Noto describes itself as ‘a New York-inspired restaurant with a love for Asian cuisine.’

Don’t let that somewhat confusing description put you off though, as this isn’t a gimmicky blend of American and Asian dishes. Instead, Noto is inspired by New York solely in its style (Ralston lived in the city for some time), which sees the restaurant serve a selection of small Asian-accented sharing plates in an unassuming dining room, which features bare plaster-washed walls, pendant lighting and sanded-down wooden tables.

The pared-back interiors are all a ploy though, as what comes out of the kitchen is far more complex and accomplished than the minimalist surroundings would suggest. As at most sharing concept restaurants, the food at Noto arrives as and when when it’s ready and ranges from one-bite pleasures to slightly larger offerings which you won’t have to fight over.

Highlights from our visit included a trio of croquettes, which oozed cheese and arrived topped with a snowdrift of grated parmesan, while a usually dull gem lettuce salad was elevated with shreds of fried chicken skin which added a welcome crunchiness.

A potato-based dish was also a thing of beauty – here, the humble vegetable is sliced into thin layers, before being pressed together to be served as dense rectangles, crisp and golden around the edges and topped with curls of equally crispy bacon (veggies can have it without the bacon).

The two desserts available on our visit sat at opposite ends of the richness scale. The base of a flaky tart was topped with a dollop of fluffy cream and delicately assembled Scottish raspberries, while a sinfully rich chocolate and hazelnut pudding was crowned with a swirl of blowtorched meringue and contained the kind of sugar content that would have a five-year-old bouncing off the walls.

Sweet-natured staff, a well-chosen list of small batch wines and a calming atmosphere helped us fall further in love with Noto, while the impossibly pretty cheese course – which is designed to look like a coral reef – is testament to a kitchen that really cares. As is often the case with small plate restaurants, the bill at Noto can add up; make no mistake though, dining here is worth every penny.

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £30 - £49
Pan Asian
Cool, Quiet conversation, Romantic
Food Occasions
Dinner, Lunch
Special Features
Vegetarian options
Perfect for
Dates, Romantic
Food Hygiene Rating


Noto in Edinburgh is an independent wine bar and restaurant serving Asian-inspired small plates alongside a portfolio of small domaine wine producers and signature cocktails. The concept is inspired by chef-owner Stuart Ralston’s time spent living and working in New York, with the menu drawing on the city’s after-hours food scene and the dishes he would eat after a night’s service. In fact, the restaurant is named after Stuart’s friend and roommate at the time Bob Noto, who took Stuart under his wing when arriving in the Big Apple. 

Noto is not Stuart’s first, or indeed only, restaurant. He originally opened highly-acclaimed Aizle in Edinburgh in 2014 (Noto’s sister restaurant), a fine dining Scottish bistro designed to draw together Scottish produce with the chef’s famed internationally-inspired cooking style. Noto is his more casual follow-up to Aizle.  

The interiors are clean, minimal and effortlessly trendy with neutral tones, wooden tables and seating and single exposed lightbulbs hanging from the ceiling. Cool, right? The unembellished interiors encourage the focus to be kept on the food and drink. 

On the menu is an exciting collection of sharing dishes which blend Asian flavours with modern European touches. For example, you might find the likes of fresh burrata spiked with romesco, chilli and toasted sourdough, or beef tartare with jerusalem artichoke and black garlic. Other, dishes include sesame prawn toast with katsuobushi, chicken yakitori with umeboshi and egg yolk and hand dived scallops with yuzu kosho and pumpkin. There are a couple of sweet dishes too: think chocolate with miso and hazelnut.  

To wash it all down, Noto’s drinks list offers an expertly-curated selection of small-producer wines and bespoke cocktails. Finally, the restaurant earned itself a Michelin Bib Gourmand in 2021, which recognises restaurants that offer fantastic food for a good value price.


Does Noto serve food at the bar?

Yes, Noto serves both food and drinks at the bar

Helpful? 0

Does Noto have a Michelin star?

Noto does not have a Michelin star, but it does have a Michelin Bib Gourmand

Helpful? 0


47A Thistle Street, New town, Edinburgh, EH2 1DY

0131 241 8518 0131 241 8518


Opening Times

Mon 12:00-21:00
Tue 12:00-21:00
Wed 12:00-21:00
Thu 12:00-21:00
Fri 12:00-21:00
Sat 12:00-21:00
Sun 12:00-21:00


Share your thoughts with other diners

Write a review

Book a table

Call Noto to make a booking on:

0131 241 8518 0131 241 8518

Visit their website

Sorry, you cannot spend SquareMeal vouchers here yet.

Other restaurants we like near Noto

Cafe St Honoré
New Town

Cafe St Honoré



Le Petit Beefbar Edinburgh
Edinburgh New Town

Le Petit Beefbar Edinburgh

Indian Lounge

Indian Lounge

Check availability