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3 Great Places to Eat in Edinburgh, UK

Thursday, January 28th, 2010

If you want to eat well in Edinburgh, you don’t have to look far. The city is a gastronomic feast with over a thousand restaurants and cafés. There are, of course, many tourist traps and places to be avoided. There are also some devilishly expensive restaurants. If you’re staying in Edinburgh on a budget, here are three places which offer great quality food, without a scary bill at the end of the meal.

restaurant sign in neon, edinburgh

Daytime lounging

If you’ve been trawling around Edinburgh’s many tourist sites or enjoying the shopping on Princes Street, you’ll no doubt be looking for a place to relax and take stock of all the city has to offer. 99 Hanover Street is, of course, on Hanover Street, just off George St.

This long beautiful ground-floor space is full of great period features – dark wood, big sofas, huge sky lights. There’s a very appetising lunch menu with a combination of small snacks and fuller meals, depending on what you’re looking for. Sit and watch the world go by while enjoying something from their great wine list or a fresh coffee.

The relaxed staff won’t hurry you along, so take the newspapers, relax and enjoy yourself in a place which offers great value. The cocktail list looks pretty impressive too, so if you fancy staying on a little later, things might get lively.

Address: 99 Hanover Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1DA

Tel: 0131 225 8200

Fine dining lunch

If you’re looking for something a little more sophisticated The Outsider is a stylish, modern and airy restaurant just south of the Royal Mile, near to the National Museum.

This space has clearly been developed recently – it’s a mix of modern design and traditional finishes with great views of Edinburgh Castle right from your table. Whatever they have done here, everyone seems really relaxed, from the staff to the diners. Nobody seems to take things too seriously – but that said the service is great and the quality of the food, outstanding.

It’s smart enough that it would be great for dining with a business colleague, and relaxed enough that you’d be comfortable to take  your mother there for lunch. The menu is a modern twist on some Scottish classics. Try the house special of griddled fish on skewers served with pitta bread and beetroot coleslaw.

Many of the main courses are designed for sharing. While this isn’t perhaps the best place for a first date, sharing a larger main course can make your meal even better value.

Lunch for two with wine and service is around £60.

Address: George IV Bridge, Edinburgh

Tel: 0131 226 3131

Contemporary Indian

There plenty of places to eat good Indian food in Edinburgh. But for somewhere with a modern twist on the traditional curry house, try Roti. This modern, stylish restaurant showcases some award-winning contemporary dishes inspired by age-old Indian cuisine. With excellent service and attention to detail, it’s an affordable gastronomic feast. The main restaurant offers an extensive a la carte menu and (more expensive) tasting menus.

For great value, diners in the bar area can enjoy the tiffin menu – a chance to choose from a variety of tasting dishes served in small tins almost like tapas. Pick 3 or 4 dishes and a few sides for a light meal for two people. With drinks it’ll cost you about £30. Also check out their ‘tiffin for a tenner’ deal at lunchtime.

If you want the full Roti experience in the main restaurant, you’re advised to reserve a table as it often gets booked up.

Address: 3 Morrison Street, Edinburgh EH3 8BU

Tel: 0131 221 9998

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Photo of a neon restaurant sign in Edinburgh by the justified sinner.

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About the author

Venere Travel Blog writer steve slack

Steve Slack is a writer and researcher based in London. He’s most often to be found either in a museum or in the bar. Or even museums which have bars. He writes about the wonderful world of south London for

2 responses to “3 Great Places to Eat in Edinburgh, UK”

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  1. Eilidh Macleod says:
    June 28th, 2010 at 18:13

    Hi Steve

    We represent Loch Fyne Restaurant in Edinburgh and were wondering how we could get the restaurant featured on your blog?

    Many thanks


  2. Steve Slack says:
    June 29th, 2010 at 09:01

    Hi Eilidh,
    I’m afraid businesses can’t advertise on this blog as it’s about individual writers’ experiences, rather than paid posts.Thanks for taking time to read the blog though.

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