Howies (Waterloo Place)
- Telephone 0131 556 5766
- Seasonal times During August: Mon–Sun noon–3pm, 5.30–10pm.
- Bar open Coffee: Mon–Sun from 11am
- Food served Mon–Thu noon–2.30pm, 5.30–10pm; Fri–Sun noon–3pm, 5.30–10pm.
- Pre-theatre times Until 6.30pm
- Average price £10.95 (set lunch); £20.90 (evening meal)
- Pre-theatre price £14.95
- Website www.howies.uk.com
Close to the city centre, Howies in Waterloo Place is a busy venue serving up good quality Scottish fare.
Venerable Scottish restaurant chain Howies has long been renowned for its egalitarian informality. You won't necessarily guess that as you walk into their historic Waterloo Place premises through an ornate octagonal lobby to the beautiful double-height dining room, replete with cupolas, cornices and balconies. It’s bedecked in an understated style, with sparse antlers and flashes of tartan just hinting at owner David Howie Scott’s Perthshire roots. It’s a suitable space for lots of things, and families, business events, tourist groups and romancing couples all mingle here. As such, the kitchen caters for all-comers with a modern menu from around the globe, underpinned with Scottish classics. It’s rarely pricey, and the cooking sometimes reflects the cost, as with a duck and pistachio terrine not particularly reminiscent of either. But at other times, it hits the mark: a starter of roast squash with a mini chickpea bhaji is liberally spiced and freshly fried, and desserts rarely disappoint, from the decidedly grown-up beetroot and chocolate torte to the definitively childish hot fudge sundae.
- High point: A combination of historic grandeur and lightness on the wallet
- Low point: The food isn’t always the best place to direct attention
- Notable dish: Chocolate and beetroot torte
- Private dining: 16-32
- Provides: Vegetarian options (at least ¼ main courses), Gluten-free options, Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Wheelchair access, Pre-theatre menu, Outdoor tables, Free wi-fi
- Music on stereo: Nothing
- Capacity: 110
- Largest group: 110
- Open since: 2001
- Number of wines sold by the glass: 12
- House wine: £16.95 per bottle
- BYOB: £4.50 corkage (£5.50 for fizz; no beer or spirits; Sun–Fri only)