My Favourite Edinburgh Cocktail Bars
By Lynne at Cocktails and Daydreams
As you can probably tell by my blog name, I am partial to a cocktail or two! Luckily for me I live in Edinburgh where there is a plethora of cocktail bars on offer. There’s pretty much something for everyone, from classy hotel bars, to quirky pubs, and we’ve even got a prohibition era style speakeasy! As such, it was quite a difficult task narrowing it down to my all time favourites but I just about managed it.
Located just off the Grassmarket in Edinburgh’s historic old town, Dragonfly is an intimate cocktail bar serving some of the best cocktails in the city. It’s one of those places that I’d always heard great things about but only actually visited for the first time last year where I had some of the nicest cocktails I’ve tasted in my LIFE. And that’s saying something! It would appear that the rest of Edinburgh agrees with me as it’s always completely packed, especially around festival time – so I’d suggest booking a table in advance. You should try… Watermelon Mmmartini or Raspberry Ripple
Quirky, cosy, and welcoming would be the 3 words I would use to describe the Roseleaf pub. Sitting on a quiet street just off the trendy shore area in Leith, this is one of my favourite pubs to take friends for dinner and drinks as they serve great Scottish food, the staff are so friendly, and it’s a lovely warm setting where you can have a proper chat. It’s another place you definitely need to book as it’s an intimate little space and is very popular with locals and nearby office workers. Their drinks speciality is cocktails served in teapots (or “pot-tails”), and if you want to take it that step further and have your own Mad Hatters Tea Party then there’s even a collection of fancy hats on the wall that you can take down and wear whilst you sip from china teacups. Just marvellous! You should try… Colada Palaver or Berry Bakewell
Situated just off Edinburgh Uni’s George Square, right slap bang in the middle of student land is 56 North. Over the last year this has become one of my favourite places to go for dinner and drinks as it’s such good value for money and there’s a great selection of cocktails. Gin lovers are in luck as 56 North houses the largest gin collection in Scotland, which means you can expect some pretty decent gin based cocktails. During the summer the large windows are opened so the inside bar merges with the outdoor table area, transforming into a bustling open plan bar that wouldn’t look out of place in the med. During the Edinburgh Festival in particular the place becomes a hub of activity, with tables filled with locals and holidaymakers enjoying a glass or two in the sunshine. You should try… The Gin Gents Ramble or Strawberry Sherbet
4)Panda & Sons
One of the hippest new bars on the Edinburgh scene is Panda & Sons. Cleverly disguised as a barber shop, this is a prohibition-era style speakeasy where you enter via a bookcase(!). Tying in with the quirky setting the cocktails are also far from ordinary, with interesting ingredients like roasted coconut water, fennel syrup, umeshu plum sake, paprika infused agave nectar, and lemongrass shrub. Drinks are served with a touch of glamour, like their Birdcage Cocktail which is surrounded by cinnamon and clove smoke. Definitely the place to impress on a first date! You should try…. Vida Villa! or Robinson Crusoe