Outside of London, we don’t tend to give the UK too much respect as a destination for food lovers. In some cases this is perfectly fair. But there are actually several other cities in the UK that have excellent and varied dining options. Edinburgh, the beautiful and alluring capital of Scotland, is one such city. The Culture Trip, writing about some of the best food destinations in the UK, described the city as a hotspot of cross-cultural cuisine, which really is how most people would characterize London as well! So let’s take a look at some of the coolest places in town to eat, both for their menus and for where they are in the city.
You might recognize this curious name as the same that was used in the title of a Colin Farrell film several years back. While it was an indie, Ondine – a tale about a mysterious woman emerging from the ocean earned some exposure on Netflix for a time. Characterized as a fairy tale for adults, it’s worth a watch, not least because of its beautiful Irish scenery. At any rate, fittingly enough this is primarily a seafood restaurant, the actual word Ondine referring to water-based elements. Specializing in oysters, it’s as good a seafood place as you’ll find in the UK outside of London, and it’s a treat to visit as well. The restaurant is cozy without feeling cramped, and is located right in the Edinburgh Old Town, where you can stroll past ancient buildings, enjoy traditional pubs, and duck into museums if you’re exploring before or after a meal.
This is a little bit of a different selection, and not a fine dining spot. But if you’re a true foodie, you’re probably interested in more than just the fanciest or highest rated places in the city. If that’s true, Canny Mans is well worth your time. It’s an intimate, tastefully cluttered place that almost looks like some sort of tavern out of a fantasy novel. Primarily a pub, Canny Mans is also known for excellent comfort food, including open sandwiches inspired by the Danish style. As for attractions in the area, there’s not too much to do right there but you might enjoy simply strolling through Morningside. It’s one of the more attractive (and affluent) neighborhoods in town, and certainly well-suited to a peaceful stroll.
This might be the coolest restaurant in town. The Kitchin is a converted whiskey warehouse where local produce and ingredients are prepared in French styles. A chic, original environment relaxes diners, the cocktail selection is excellent, and the food is elegant and seasonal. It’s also fun to visit because of its location by the docks in the north of the city. It’s always fun to be by the sea, and one of the city’s casinos also happens to be around the corner. Some may not realize that despite online casinos being completely legal in the UK there are still some brick-and-mortar venues in larger cities as well, and Edinburgh is no exception. In this case, that means a full night out if you want one, with dinner at The Kitchin and an hour or two at the card tables afterward.
This may just be the best place in town for international tourists, simply because of its location. Within the Old Town, Amber Restaurant exists quite literally in the shadows of Edinburgh Castle, perhaps the city’s biggest attraction, if not the most noteworthy landmark in all of Scotland. A castle tour ending with a meal at Amber is an excellent way to spend an afternoon and evening â€“ and to be clear, this isn’t merely a place to grab a bite. There’s very good food, mostly revolving around traditional Scottish preparations and ingredients. The menu actually rotates with the seasons, but suffice it to say a healthy focus on meats, local veggies, seafood, and potatoes will keep most guests happy. And, naturally, there’s a whiskey bar as well!