Discover Edinburgh’s culinary delights – those discrete restaurants and bars that sit under the radar but are always a hive of bustling activity.
Food and Drink
The Gardener’s Cottage
The warm and intimate Gardener’s Cottage pays homage to its past life as a 19th century gardener’s cottage where fresh produce was grown all year round.
Located on the leafy setting of Royal Terrace Gardens, today the restaurant continues to use the well-stocked kitchen garden to grow a variety of herbs, fruit, vegetables and edible flowers, all of which are used in their delicious and creative dishes. Diners here can therefore expect a vibrant and varied menu which changes with the seasons.
If you’re looking for authentic Italian dishes that are fully vegan, then a trip to Sora Lella should most definitely be at the top of your to-do list.
You’ll find all the family favourites here, from carbonara to pizza – all mouth-wateringly delicious and all without any meat or dairy.
The Haggis Box
With a name like The Haggis Box, there’s no mystery as to the speciality of this restaurant inside the Scottish Storytelling Centre on the city’s historic Royal Mile.
Their award-winning traditional haggis is served with locally sourced neeps and tatties, alongside a choice of sauces. Vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and dairy-free options are also available.
Top tip: keep an eye on their social channels for announcements of where you can find their roaming Haggis Box and enjoy Scotland’s national dish on the go.
The Table Restaurant
For a unique fine dining experience in the city, The Table Restaurant ticks all the boxes.
The hook of this rather special restaurant is one table, two chefs and ten seats. Diners are greeted by the chefs and seated at a table which overlooks the open-plan kitchen, where they talk through each of the seven-course tasting menu dishes as they are prepared.
It’s not cheap, but if you’re looking for a theatrical and interactive dining experience, this is surely it.
Makars Gourmet Mash Bar
If you think no meal is complete without mashed potatoes then Makars Gourmet Mash Bar is for you.
Serving delicious and affordable dishes that are inspired by Scotland’s natural larder, choose from at least 9 varieties of mash including smoked bacon, spring onion and creamed horseradish, alongside mains such as haggis with heather honey and turnip puree or vegetarian sausage with whisky and peppercorn sauce.
Pubs & Bars
Located in the neighbourhood of Tollcross, a short distance from the city centre, The Blackbird is a great place to head if you fancy indulging in some award-winning cocktails.
Offering style and substance in equal measure, we recommend ordering some of their tasty rice bowls, street food and small plates which can be enjoyed all the more in their fairy-lit beer garden.
The Devil’s Advocate
Tucked down Advocates Close in an old Victorian pump house, The Devil’s Advocate is one of Edinburgh’s most atmospheric bars.
If whisky is your tipple of choice, this a great bar to seek out – they stock more than 300 varieties!
SKYbar at DoubleTree Hilton
You may already be familiar with the DoubleTree by Hilton Edinburgh hotel, but did you know that they have a spectacular roof-top bar that offers sweeping views of the city?
SKYbar at DoubleTree Hilton is open to the public on weekends (small well-behaved dogs are welcome on Sunday afternoons), offering a stylish range of cocktails, spirits and sharing brunch platters. A feast for the eyes and the senses, it’s the perfect location to enjoy a glass of something nice while watching the sun set over the city.
The Cauldron Bar
Love everything magical? The Cauldron Bar offers a range of enchanting cocktails and spirits that are out of this world. Dare you try the spell-binding Serum of Loose Lips or Dragon’s Breath?
If you’ve ever fancied yourself as a bit of a wizard then why not book a place on their Potion Making Workshop and you’ll get the chance to brew two magical concoctions (with or without alcohol) that bubble and smoke in front of your eyes!
Hoot the Redeemer
Styled as a 1950’s funfair, Hoot the Redeemer is one of Edinburgh’s most quirky bars.
Complete with a Tarot reading machine, boozy ice cream and slushies, their extensive cocktail menu is a sight to behold. More of a beer or cider fan? All their stock is locally sourced, so you can be assured your pint has not travelled more than 100 miles from brewery to bar.
Explore all Food and Drink
From comfort food to fine dining, discover more places to tempt your tastebuds in our guide to Food and Drink in Edinburgh.
Things to See and Do
Take a wander off Edinburgh’s beaten track and you’ll find an assortment of things to see and do that offer something a wee bit different.
Explore our hidden closes and streets where you're bound to find some of the most unique and interesting boutiques in the country.