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.
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
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
Top 3 hotels in Edinburgh
- Hotel The King James – 3-star hotel in Old Town/New Town – double room from £56,00/€78,90
- Victoria Park Hotel - 3-star hotel in Leith – double room from £69,00/€78,90
- The Salisbury Hotel – 4-star hotel in Meadows-Marchmont - double room from £65,00/€74,30
Photo of a neon restaurant sign in Edinburgh by the justified sinner.