Best Restaurants Edinburgh Fine Dining

Best Restaurants Edinburgh Fine Dining

Best Restaurants Edinburgh Fine Dining

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Looking to eat your way around the capital? Here’s our pick of the best restaurants in Edinburgh

Best Restaurants Edinburgh Fine Dining

Best Restaurants Edinburgh Fine Dining

The talent within Edinburgh’s food and drink scene means that the city is always treated to a surprise. But even among the most established favorites, you can expect the best and freshest local produce, delicious international flavors, and original creations from the best chefs nearby.

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Edinburgh may be known for its history, culture and natural beauty, but it’s also home to many unique restaurants serving everything from high-quality meat and shellfish from across Scotland to plant-based menus offering a traditional twist. If you’re looking to see a restaurant in the city, here’s our pick of Edinburgh’s best restaurants – all worth checking out on your trip here.

Why did you go? Chef Stuart Ralston and front of house supremo Krystal Goff opened Aizle in 2014 following the concept of “bistronomy”: fresh local food in an informal setting, but with the kind of tasting menu you expect in a very hot place. The group has now moved to the Garden Room at Kimpton Charlotte Square. But their proven vision remains the same, with a board that will use the latest ingredients detailed in Ralston to relax your six-course blast.

Time to go out Tip: On the wall is a board of fresh ingredients to make your dinner; You tell the wait staff what you prefer to avoid, if anything.

Why did you go? Scott Smith’s latest campaign for Edinburgh Fhior – which is Gaelic for “truth” or “loyalty” – certainly lives up to its name. Their ambitious use of edible ingredients and local produce is what pays off with each dish on the seven or ten course menu. . And there’s something to take home: Yes, the menu that will be delivered to you in a mysterious envelope at the end.

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Time-out tip: Need a splurge? Add drinks to your meal for £60 for seven courses or £85 for ten.

Why did you go? This isn’t part of Leith’s fashion scene, not by a long shot – but go ahead because Aurora deserves it. It started life as a brunch-focused cafe, and has evolved into a contemporary bistro that uses local, seasonal and raw produce.

Time Out Tip: If you’re coming to one of their regular events like the Seafood Club, don’t delay.

Best Restaurants Edinburgh Fine Dining

Why did you go? Timberyard nails more than enough for a fine dining experience: Expect unusual ingredients and interesting combinations that run the gamut from drinks to dessert, and a hipster vibe. It’s a family business, and owner-operators Radfords – and their growing team of local growers, breeders, producers and caterers – have put you in safe hands.

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Time out Tip: It’s always worth asking the waiter to be precise with the small descriptions of the menu, as the combinations are often more interesting than the starters.

Why did you go? Named after the owners’ love of sailing, The Little Chartroom is Edinburgh’s most talked about restaurant scene and it truly lives up to it. The dishes are contemporary but pay homage to traditional Scottish flavors and cooking. The new Little Chartroom location is at 14 Bonnington Road (formerly Martin Wishart’s kitchen).

Time Out Tip: The team recently opened Eleanore’s in the former space on Leith Walk. It’s a restaurant and wine bar with a sophisticated, fresh and delightfully simple menu.

What the hell? A permanent bistro that has not lost its charm and a loyal observer of the SlowFood movement.

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Why did you go? Café St Honoré was there for donkeys, but it still, rightly, comes into the conversation as one of the best bistros in central Edinburgh. The French angle has been sidelined in favor of local Scottish produce, expertly cooked, and adhering to the principles of Slow Food.

Time Out Tip: Counting pennies? Try the reasonably priced Café Classics menu (three courses of their favorite dishes for £27.50).

Why did you go? Since opening as a former watchmaker in 2008, L’Escargot Bleu has thrived among trendy coffee shops, independent booksellers and award-winning butchers. The floor-to-ceiling windows and comfortable tables at the front of the restaurant create ample opportunity for a tête-à-tête, while the load of the open kitchen to the back adds to the bohemian Frenchness.

Best Restaurants Edinburgh Fine Dining

Why did you go? Tucked away on the ground floor of a traditional house, picture windows and bench seating offer views over Bruntsfield Links, where residents gather to play a round of golf on sunny summer evenings. The short, ever-changing menu offers a few choices for each course – all well thought out, with local ingredients and creative combinations. Very friendly service, too.

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Why did you go? Paul Kitching’s 21212 – opened in 2009, Michelin-starred in 2010 – is housed in Royal Terrace, a prestigious, boulevard of 19th-century townhouses on the side of Calton Hill. Cooking is among the best things in Scotland. Dinner is built around a choice of two starters, a soup, a choice of two mains, a cheese course and two dessert options.

Why did you go? Launched in 2015, this restaurant has one table – a coffee table affair right next to the open kitchen – and serves a maximum of 10 meals in one evening. The surroundings float and you interact with the chefs as they cook – it’s hard to know when a good meal ends and the art of performance begins.

Why did you go? Since Gardener’s Cottage opened in 2012, chef and co-owners Ed Murray and Dale Mailley have garnered serious culinary kudos. Their ethos is simple: to create a great sense of place, and seasonal food that connects food, producer and land.

Time Out Tip: At the top of Calton Hill you’ll find The Lookout is the Gardener’s Cottage, which boasts some of the best views of the city.

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Why did you go? There’s plenty of seating, and the small-plate style is perfect for groups who want to share. If you’re traveling alone, plan ahead because you’ll want to eat your way around as delicious, flavorful a menu as possible. The cooking is precise, the flavors are bold, and it’s all very Insta-worthy.

Why did you go? Locanda De Gustila was introduced to the other side of Edinburgh a few years ago, moved to Ezayo Dalry Road in 2014 – less than five minutes’ walk from Haymarket station – and now enjoys an enviable reputation for its food and service. Chef Rosario Sartore is from Naples, so the cooking has a low Italian style, with lots of excellent seafood, while the decor puts the food in a bright and dignified farmhouse kitchen.

Why did you go? This modern bistro, led by chef Darren Murray, focuses on sustainable and environmentally responsible food. This, combined with the Borough’s relaxed atmosphere and expert local produce, makes the four-course menu exceptional. Expect dishes such as braised Borders lamb and grilled North Sea hake, along with a good wine selection.

Best Restaurants Edinburgh Fine Dining

What the hell? The Scottish equivalent of Bombay’s brasseries decorated in the classic post-colonial style of ‘Irani cafes’.

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Why did you go? Dishoom is a contemporary London success story since its launch in 2010 in Covent Garden. As with the flagship store, Edinburgh station draws heavily on South Asian Iranian cafes and recalls those opened by Iranian immigrants in Mumbaiway.

Why did you go? Part of a small chain of three bistros, the Educated Flea is a pocket-sized lounge on busy Broughton Street. Expect unusual combinations and large sharing plates with local beef and seafood. The daily menu is served in the pre-theatre and is a real bargain.

Time Out Tip: Space is scarce, so make a reservation, but restaurants The Apiary and Three Birds are also brilliant if the place is crowded.

Why did you go? You might be thinking, what’s so special about a sandwich shop? But how Natasha Ferguson and Matt Belcher make sandwiches takes comfort food to another level. The couple is always experimenting with packing flavors into their “big, warm” focaccia sandwiches, and their ever-changing menu features options like fried chicken Caesar kiev, panko shrimp and fried cauliflower.

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Time Out Tip: The club also organizes so-called ‘sandwich parties’, if you’re looking for a completely different kind of celebration.

Why did you go? There’s a warm, relaxed atmosphere here, from the modern decor to the contemporary Scottish menu. Dinner is rich in choice, with signature dishes such as lobster thermidor crème brûlée among the highlights. For dessert it has to be the sticky toffee pudding with bunnahabhain whiskey butterscotch.

Time Out Tip: Wedgwood has launched a new initiative that brings chefs to your garden or outdoor space of your choice to cook an unforgettable meal for your party.

Best Restaurants Edinburgh Fine Dining

Why did you go? Mother India started as a restaurant in Glasgow in the 90s, and this Edinburgh location popped up in 2008, serving Indian food in tapas-sized portions. There are 50 dishes on offer that give a new twist to Indian restaurants – chicken tikka, for example, comes in two flavors, with peanuts or peppers, mushrooms and tomatoes.

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Why did you go?

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