So you’ve walked along the Royal Mile, have climbed Arthur’s Seat, and visited Edinburgh Castle. Now you’re hungry and thirsty and at a loss where to eat. Let me recommend the places where we ate. Some served good food, some serve unforgettable meals. Let’s go eat!
One of the owners of our B&B recommended Clarinda’s Tearoom (69 Canongate, Edinburgh EH8 8BS, UK). He waxed lyrical about their pastries, so we had to try it. Located on the Royal Mile, across from the Scottish Parliament, it’s a good location for a pit stop for tea and cake. Although I found the place a bit twee with all that lace and antiques, I can assure you that their baked goods are delicious.
Someone recommended Oink and I owe a debt of gratitude to them. Oink, a small local chain, serves up the most delicious pulled pork sandwiches. The meat is tender and moist, the crackling is perfectly crispy. You choose the bun size, sage and onion or haggis stuffing, and the sauce (mayo and mustard, sweet chili, and so on) and away you go. We went to the Canongate location. There’s two more, in Victoria Street and Hanover Street.
The Scran & Scallie
The Scran & Scallie is a fantastic gastropub owned by two chefs, one of whom is Michelin star chef Tom Kitchin. And it shows! The food is phenomenal, the flavours are spot on, and so is the presentation. We didn’t have a reservation on a Friday night (big mistake) and waited for a table at the well-stocked bar. We talked to the friendly bartender and had a couple of drinks before getting a table. Every single dish was to die for, from the pigeon breast with black pudding and quail’s egg to the bangers and mash and the barley risotto. The atmosphere is relaxed and family-friendly. They will get a taxi for you if you ask pretty please.
Blonde Restaurant was another recommendation from our hosts. This reinforces my belief in local knowledge. We had a wonderful dinner. I’m still craving the black pudding croquettes! (I love black pudding.) Sean’s venison casserole with chocolate was a nice surprise. He was hesitant to order it at first but he enjoyed it thoroughly. The chocolate gives the sauce depth without tasting chocolatey. Service was very attentive and friendly.
The Refinery is a modern, hip bar and restaurant located across St. Andrew’s Square. I liked its style, however, I didn’t care for the service, inattentive at best. The reason we came here was their haggis burger. The haggis is mixed with the mince and it lends a subtle flavour. We enjoyed the burger. the chips weren’t great but weren’t bad either. All in all, I’m glad we decided to try that burger.
We found Patisserie Valerie by chance. We had been to see The Elephant, made famous because that’s where JK Rowling sat to write Harry Potter. It was crowded, there was a long wait, and it didn’t look like much. So we went next door, where we got a table right away. We had tea and the most scrumptious millefeuille in a quiet place. Patisserie Valerie is a chain, so you’ll find it in other UK cities.
I can honestly say that we did not have a bad meal in Edinburgh. These are the restaurants we tried and enjoyed. I may or may not be carrying a couple extra pounds…..