Best Bars and Pubs in Edinburgh
The top places to grab a beer, gin or cocktail in Scotland's capital city
Partly thanks to neighbourhood gentrification and partly due to a desire to stand out to discerning drinkers who are moving away from unimaginative pack ‘em in boozers, Edinburgh’s bar landscape has changed in the last few years. And for anyone who’s not just here for a gassy, generic beer the changes are for the better. Good times and good fun go hand-in-hand with unpretentious cocktails, craft beer, great food and even a focus on families. While the burger is still the pub grub of choice for many, more imaginative options are making their presence felt. And (chin chin) the wine bar is back – rebooted and relaxed for 2016.
129 Fountainbridge, West End, EH3 9QG
Edinburgh's Swedish chain takes on its biggest venture yet, and gets everything right with good food, drink and family friendliness.
bodabar.com/akva | read our review of Akva
The Bon Vivant
55 Thistle Street, New Town, EH2 1DY
Atmospheric sister venues in the New Town and Stockbridge, offering smart, stylish and flexible eating and drinking choices.
bonvivantedinburgh.co.uk | read our review of The Bon Vivant
Hoot The Redeemer
7 Hanover Street, New Town, EH2 2DL
Fun new cocktail bar from the Panda & Sons stable, blending subterranean cool with an inventive retro funfair theme.
hoottheredeemer.com/ | read our review of Hoot The Redeemer
The Last Word Saloon
44 St Stephen Street, Stockbridge, EH3 5AL
Candlelit, sheepskin-lined basement bar in Stockbridge serving excellent, unusual cocktails (but not much food) by the fireside.
lastwordsaloon.com/ | read our review of The Last Word Saloon
99 Hanover Street
99 Hanover Street, New Town, EH2 1DJ
Busy, upbeat cocktail bar, which takes centre stage on Hanover Street with daily live DJs.
99hanoverstreet.com/ | read our review of 99 Hanover Street
41 Lothian Street, Old Town, EH1 1HB
Good-time cocktail lounge vibe in the heart of student land, where vegetarian soul food has spirit, as do the drinks.
theparadisepalms.co.uk | read our review of Paradise Palms
Smith & Gertrude
26 Hamilton Place, Stockbridge, EH3 5AU
Quality music, books, cheese, charcuterie and wine at this laid-back and informal reinvention of the contemporary wine bar.
smithandgertrude.com/ | read our review of Smith & Gertrude
22 South Clerk Street, Southside, EH8 9PR
Appealing Southside local with a fantastic selection of burgers, plenty of craft beers and a laid-back vibe.
thesouthern.co.uk | read our review of The Southern