Most people see Scotland as a place full of bland food. The kind of food that your parents cook when they have no imagination. But all of that is wrong!
Scottish food is amazing, and you can find all sorts of interesting dishes. Everything made is fresh and savory. They don’t put as many chemicals into products as they do in the United States. Even though you might eat bad here, you’re still eating far better.
While there are a lot of places to check out food already in Edinburgh, here are my top 10 best places to eat!
Ryrie’s is a great local pub located in the Dalry section of Edinburgh. The crowd leans toward the older people, but that makes this place even better. It means you can come in with a group of friends and relax for a good evening filled with conversations and amazing food.
Choosing a beer can be the luck of a draw when visiting other countries. If you’re at a lose of what to go with check out Tennent’s; this is a nice lager which pairs perfectly with any meal. Make sure to try the Haggis, Neeps, and Tatties meal here. While I didn’t care for the vegetables, the meat and mashed potatoes were amazing!
Badger & Co.
The love for the famous children’s book The Wind in the Willow’s comes alive in this small restaurant. Badger & Co. features the famous Badger as the perfect host in this place. Large photographs on the walls depict him in various suits which add to the sophisticated atmosphere of the place. High ceilings pair well with the bright rooms and golden details. This place makes you feel as if you’ve been welcomed into Badger’s home.
Once the birth place of the book’s author, Kenneth Grahame, this restaurant is great for a quiet breakfast or lunch. Something to keep in mind is the eccentric food available here: Scottish brown crab, pigeon, chorizo, scallops, and fish pie are only some of the few. A good breakfast item to try is the Beans on Toast. This dish is comprised of a large piece of toast, loads of baked beans, and topped with a large mushroom!
Makars Gourmet Mash Bar
If you’re looking for a more upbeat and modernized place check out the Makars Gourmet Mash Bar. This place has a little bit of the Austin hipster vibe without going overboard and keeping it classy.
Deacon Brodies Tavern
Do you have a sophisticated and dirty party side? If so, this is the place to go! Deacon Brodies Tavern is named after Deacon Brodie; the man who was a sophisticated gentleman during the day and a thief at night. He was the real person who inspired Robert L. Stevenson to write the famous book The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde.
The building is comprised of two floors: the restaurant and the tavern. The restaurant serves great food, but either get there early or make a reservation since it gets crowded quickly. When I went here, I found it easier to get a small appetizers in the tavern and a half pint. The pairing were perfect! The mushrooms and cheese tasted wonderful.
Cafe in Princes Street Gardens
This was one of my favorite places to eat. On a rainy day you can find shelter under their large umbrella and order some coffee and a fresh hot crepe. This place has some of the best fish and chips with vinegar to pair with it. For Americans, vinegar on fish seems weird but it’s surprisingly tasty. If you need ketchup they do have that, but try the tartar sauce and vinegar with the fish first.
Take the traditional French crepe and put a Brazilian twist on it! Okay, so this one took me a bit to find. It’s only open at certain times and sometimes they’re a bit late. You can find this place near Middle Meadow Walk and Lauriston Place.
There’s usually a long line here so be prepared to wait. The wide selection is sure to have something satisfying for everyone. Tupiniquim crepes are a bit thinner, but they are just as filling.
A hidden local gem. Leo’s Beanery is filled with locals and people from all around the world which ties into their decoration. Maps and travels cover the walls of this place. Stepping below street level, you’ll enter into a slightly dark cafe.
Everyone is nice here and the coffee tastes great. This place is good if you want to meet up with friends for a good conversation or work on your computer.
This upscale bakery will satisfy your taste buds with a variety of flavors. The place offers cupcakes, cookies, macarons, and various other treats. Last time I visited Bibi’s I tried the Rhubarb & Custard macaron and the Elderflower cupcake. Both of these were moist, flavorful, and perfectly baked. You can’t go wrong at this place with anything you chose.
Another bakery to try is Patisserie Valerie. This place offers even more of a variety than Bibi’s. One of my favorite treats here is the strawberry tart. They always make sure to use the freshest ingredients. Other treats to try are strawberry gateau, cheesecake, mixed berry mousse, and coffee éclair.
Inside, you’ll find this to be somewhat of a vintage bakery. Some locations offer lunch menus and seats to sit down and relax with a cup of coffee. Make sure to drop by here to pick up a box of treats for your next picnic!