Two English people walk into some Scottish bars… Aaron and I love checking out local bars and pubs when we are visiting a new place. And Edinburgh, I can confirm, has plenty of bars and pubs. We tested out local gins (of which are also plenty!), lager, wine and even tried an obligatory whisky. Over the few days we spent in the heart of Scotland, we definitely did our revision when it came to the drinking scene. I think I can confidently and expertly give you a condensed list of bars and pubs you must visit if you ever find yourself in the city of bagpipes and tartan. Here a just a few of the bars and pubs (mostly bars features on this list but the pubs were, I promise, as epic as you’d imagine) we visited.
The Newsroom was our first stop of any sort in Edinburgh. It’s a very modern and quirky bar that, to my delight, stocked an awful lot of Edinburgh gin. It was always going to be a yes from me. I got myself an Edinburgh Gin Elderflower liqueur with tonic which started our trip off in the most summery way. Aaron tried a Czech beer (Krusovice) that he fell in love with. I can confirm, after one sip, I should have made it my mission to go back and have a pint myself. The Newsroom wears a very chilled out vibe that Aaron and I could have soaked in for the whole night if it wasn’t for the Liverpool game we had to see and the early night (for our half marathon the next morning) we had to give in to.
We visited The Mitre Bar with our friend Jacob and his friends on the Sunday evening, after our run. Aaron, Jacob and I were exhausted from the morning’s half marathon and were sporting race stories and tired legs. That didn’t stop us from saying a chin chin to Edinburgh in the cosy Mitre Bar. It has the kind of warm, dark and welcoming vibe a pub should have. An acoustic performer was doing his thing and we helped out in the choruses. The Mitre Bar sits on the Royal Mile and is the perfect pub pit stop on your night out in Edinburgh.
Aaron and I were indecisive-ly deciding where to head for dinner on our final night in Edinburgh when we stumbled across an Italian wine bar. Since we both work at Italians and fancy ourselves as quite the Italian wine experts, this stop off was more than necessary. We opted for two medium glasses of Nero D’avola, my favourite Italian red. The bar has the warmest, most Italian vibe and I’m so glad we found this little gem. I could have easily stayed there and tested more and more wine but I’m not made for liquid dinners.
After our trip to the Edinburgh Gin Distillery, we found ourselves walking the streets of Edinburgh without a plan. Or so I thought. Aaron, however, had one tucked up his sleeve. He’d been doing some Instagram searching and stumbled across the gloriously stylish Ishka, a cocktail bar made for Instagram fanatics like me. I mean, who can resist taking a photo of a cocktail on a marble surface?! While we were the only ones in the bar, it was easy to imagine how exciting the bar and restaurant must become. I opted for the My Dear Violet cocktail, made of Daffy’s gin, Liquer de Violette, Prosecco, mint, lemongrass and fresh lime juice. It was divine. Ishka is the bar dreams are made of and I could quite happily have sat there and ordered endless My Dear Violets. It tastes just like Parma Violets.
Gin is the basis for most of mine and Aaron’s decisions (which I would never recommend) and it was very much the reason we headed to The Printing Press as our final stop on our final evening. We’d seen a board outside advertising their very own gin, No. 25. Well, we were sold. And it was GOOD. We sat opposite the very grand bar (as pictured above) and sipped on No. 25. It was the perfect way to end the perfect trip.
Edinburgh has it down when it comes to pubs and bars. We also, I must note, loved Ryan’s as a beverage hub (I just mentioned it so much in my last post, I thought I should probably shut up about it). Have you been to any noteworthy bars or pubs in Edinburgh?