The Mussel and Steak Bar
- Telephone 0131 225 5028
- Seasonal times Open all day in summer / Edinburgh Festival period and Winter festival period.
- Food served Mon–Thu noon–2.45pm, 5–10pm; Fri–Sun noon–10pm.
- Pre-theatre times Sun–Thu 5–6.45pm
- Pre-theatre price £17.95 for 3 courses
- Website www.musselandsteakbar.com
An informal independent Old Town favourite serving up excellent mussels and steaks.
With its Grassmarket location, you'd be forgiven for thinking this inviting white and blue-fronted restaurant could be something of a tourist trap. But there’s no complacency here – it’s a place that prides itself on doing the simple things well. And those things are mussels and steaks. The air is heavy with the scent of garlic as pots of blue shell mussels are delivered to expectant diners. They don’t disappoint: these Shetland-grown shellfish are sweet and fleshy and come with a choice of four sauces. Various chargrilled steaks are on offer, from 38-day aged Scottish beef to a mighty 1kg Tomahawk steak. Besides the eponymous options, other seafood such as grilled langoustines, scallops and oysters form the core of the menu, and their beef dripping chips deserve a special mention, perfectly crunchy on the outside and fluffy within. Desserts, such as a spongy sticky toffee pudding, are crowd pleasers rather than inventive confections, and though a Mellis cheeseboard is served too cold, the addition of honeycomb and quality thick oatcakes redeems it.
- Private dining: Up to 22 covers
- Provides: Gluten-free options, Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Wheelchair access, Pre-theatre menu, Outdoor tables
- Music on stereo: Jazz standards
- Capacity: 75 (12 seats outside in winter and 25-30 in summer)
- Largest group: 22
- Open since: 2005
- Number of wines sold by the glass: 12
- House wine: £18.95 per bottle