Though a historic city, there’s a lot to love about what’s new in Auld Reekie. Namely, some of the most interesting, diverse, and contemporary restaurants found in the UK. Heading in the direction of Edinburgh fringe this August? Here are a few establishments – new or noteworthy – to book ahead for.
London’s tried and tested steak concept comes north of the border for the first time. As well as the prime steaks, impeccable sourcing, and resplendent dining rooms it’s known for, Hawksmoor also does a sumptuous roast. Enough to rival those of The Ox and The Queens Arms? Only one way to find out.
83 Hanover Street
Juan Jose Castillo Castro, owner of the well-respected 99 Hanover Street, decided to add another number to his repertoire this summer. Much like his previous setup, the menu features nods to his Swedish and Chilean background, including his mum’s recipe for empanadas.
Restaurant Mark Greenaway
One of the runners-up in The Observer Food Monthly’s ‘Best Restaurant’ category last year, Greenaway’s establishment is still up there with the UK’s finest, even in the wake of what the restaurant scene has thrown us in the seven years since its opening.
Brasserie Prince by Alain Roux
It might have taken five years to fit The Balmoral with its new refurb, but now that Roux and son’s new restaurant and bar is in there, it makes it that little bit more worth it. Expect French dishes, but after they’ve been dragged through the Scottish countryside.
The Gardener’s Cottage
Based out of an 1836 cottage, go for wholesome food not too far off what you’d expect of the time. Indeed, the menu almost reads like Mrs Beeton’s cookbook: pig’s blood tarts, mutton with pearl barley, honey cake, and all.
What was once based out of a police box recently became a fully-fledged plant-based café on Ratcliffe Terrace. Depending on when you go, you’ll find anything from vegan cheese tasting sessions to raw supper clubs and their own on-site Sunday market.
Grand Café at The Scotsman
The recently renovated Grand Café is just as you might expect – marble columns, chandeliers, mezzanines, and high ceilings, as inspired by the magnificent brasseries and cafés of Europe. As for the cooking? In the hands of MasterChef: The Professionals finalist Chris Niven, it’s often just as striking.
Makars Gourmet Mash Bar
If you wanted to try proper, down and dirty Scottish comfort food, Makars would be one of the places in which to do it. Their new West End branch opened earlier this year, with tasters of gammon, haggis, and sausages served alongside as many types of mash as you could hope for.
Chop House, Bruntsfield
This popular small steak chain opened its third site in March. The concept is simple: the best of British beef (via their own butchery), seared over a charcoal grill. Expect the odd appearance from guest breeds, including UK-reared Wagyu and heather-grazed Highlands. Pop in for a lunchtime steak sarnie or a proper Sunday roast.
Visit OpenTable to discover more restaurants in Edinburgh.
This is a guest post from freelance food journalist Hugh Thomas. He’s contributed to Foodism, Time Out, Great British Chefs, and is part of British Street Food’s small team of vigilant writers. Find him on twitter @hughwrites.