Somewhere to eat in Edinburgh

Edinburgh is a culinary mecca which regularly welcomes new restaurants to its streets, serving everything from local Scottish produce to international specialities. Choosing where to eat is not for the indecisive. Here are some suggestions to start you off. 

Somewhere… for breakfast

Urban Angel – 121 Hanover Street 

Urban Angel is exactly that, a healthy haven for food lovers in a cute New Town basement. Focusing on local produce and organic ingredients, the popular bistro brings together avocado and ricotta, jumbo oats and goji berries, smoked haddock and poached eggs. Cravings of the less nourishing variety are also catered for in the shape of sausages, black pudding and French toast with bacon and maple syrup. 

City Café – 19 Blair Street

To start your day the ‘Full Scottish’ way, an American style diner in the Old Town awaits. Wash down your generous plateful of Scottish favourites, including ‘tattie scone’ and haggis, with a free cup of tea or coffee while admiring the quirky interior. Known by locals as ‘City Caf’, it’s a popular go-to for a great value cooked breakfast just off the Royal Mile. 

Somewhere… for brunch

The Pantry – 1 North West Circus Place 

Start a little later and less traditional, and follow the New Town cobbles down to the village-like area of Stockbridge. The ‘Sunshine on Stockbridge’ dish alone is worth the walk. Add chorizo for £2.50, and marvel at your rainbow coloured dish; guacamole, paprika tomato, spiced sweet potato, roasted aubergine, poblano pepper, poached eggs and fresh chilli. Served until 14.30 on weekdays, 15.30 on weekends.

Somewhere… to try haggis

1780 Bar & Restaurant – 167 Rose Street

Rose Street is best known for its high concentration of pubs, which regularly beckon locals and visitors alike on the ‘pub crawl challenge’ tackling. Amidst the many pubs is 1780, a classic and cosy establishment featuring a compulsory traditional haggis dish on the menu. Brought to life with a homemade highland whisky sauce, this rendition of ‘haggis, neeps and tatties’ is a perfect introduction, or revisit, to our national dish. 

Somewhere… local

Three Birds Restaurant – 1-3 Viewforth 

Small, intimate and welcoming, dining at the Three Birds is like popping over to your friend’s place for a bite to eat. If your friend also happened to be an amazing chef that is! The thoughtful menu is packed with interesting local ingredients, and delicious flavour combinations. The quality of the dishes by far exceeds the very reasonable prices, in particular the set lunch menu which is a fantastic £10 per person.

Somewhere for… seafood

Fishers Leith – 1 The Shore 

Take your search for seafood no further than Edinburgh’s waterfront, a centuries old port at The Shore. Set in a 17th century watchtower, the seafood served at Fishers Leith is thankfully not caught in the Water of Leith that the restaurant overlooks. It is sourced from all around Scotland, focusing on quality and freshness. Try the Chilled Seafood Platter, featured on the ‘Fishers Favourites’ menu.

Somewhere… on a budget

Oink – 34 Victoria Street or 82 Canongate 

The choice is simple, because there is only one option – a hog roast roll. The only decisions you will need to make are what size of roll you can stomach and what you’d like to top it off with; sage & onion, apple sauce, chilli relish or (very Scottish) haggis. You’re guaranteed a satisfying roll loaded with juicy roast pork, and all for under £5. 

Somewhere… typically Scottish

Angels with Bagpipes – 343 Royal Mile 

The name is intrinsically Scottish, and inspired by wooden carvings found in the Thistle Chapel in St Giles Cathedral, of which the restaurant sits opposite. The setting is intimately narrow and elegantly styled, serving up seasonal dishes which are as are gorgeous to the eye as they are on the palette. Treat your taste buds to a tour of Scottish produce, from rabbit to scallops, with the multi-course Tasting Menu, or take advantage of the Seasonal Lunch menu which starts from £17.50. 

Somewhere… to drink

The Jolly Judge – 493 Lawnmarket 

A hidden secret of the Royal Mile, finding this little gem of a pub is half the fun. Walk through a quintessential Old Town ‘close’ and down a series of steps into the cosy, compact interior. Choose from a promising selection of single malt whiskies then grab a seat in front of the open fire, or in one of the inviting alcoves. 

Whistle Binkies – 4–6 South Bridge

Enter via South Bridge or Niddry Street and descend into music-filled darkness. Built into the city’s haunted underground vaults, the pub is allegedly frequented by two ghosts, as well as tourists, students and locals. The key selling point of this establishment is it’s offering of live music, which can be enjoyed until 3am, seven nights a week.