The Bon Vivant

The Bon Vivant
55 Thistle Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1DY
  • Telephone 0131 225 3275
  • Seasonal times Festival and Christmas: late license to 3am.
  • Bar open Mon–Sun noon–1am.
  • Food served Mon–Sun noon–10pm.
  • Average price £12 (set lunch); £25 (evening meal)
  • Email
  • Website
Photo of The Bon Vivant
in association with
Birra Moretti

Atmospheric bar/restaurant in the New Town offering smart, stylish and flexible eating and drinking choices.

Eating & Drinking Guide

The 2016/17 edition of The List's Eating & Drinking Guide is out now – only £5.95 (+p&p).

This review is taken from the current (2016) edition.

With its flickering candles, Farrow and Ball-style paint hues and striking art deco wall art the Bon Vivant is an intimate and stylish space. Everything from the décor to the wine-list, in both the original Thistle Street venue and sister bar in Stockbridge, is well thought out. The brief but smartly constructed menu offers canapé style bites (in individual portions or starter sized trios) middles and mains; allowing for either selective grazing or a full-scale blow out. After constructing your own starter of, say, haggis bonbons, squid with pickled cucumber or pork belly bites you can move onto the full-scale delights of duck and Puy lentils or beautifully cooked venison with a port and chocolate sauce. With more than 40 wines by the glass and an alluring cocktail list delivered by award-winning bartenders, there are a myriad of options for indulging in a spot of food and drink pick’n’mix. If you find the choices overwhelming, the knowledgeable, good–natured staff will happily nudge you towards the best possible combinations.

  • High point: Top-class food and drink with relaxed service
  • Low point: Not many choices for vegetarians
  • Notable dish: Venison served with spiced red cabbage and a port and chocolate infused sauce
  • Provides: Free wi-fi
  • Music on stereo: Laid-back hip-hop
  • Live entertainment: DJs playing hip-hop, funk and soul from 9pm on Fri/Sat.
  • Capacity: 35
  • Largest group: 35
  • Open since: 2008
  • Number of wines sold by the glass: 40, 50 including Champagnes
  • House wine: £22 per bottle

Reviews & features

Glass half full - 42Below cocktail world cup

10 Sep 2009

It was a battle of the ages. A dozen warriors armed with silver shakers, crushed ice and angostura bitters striving to become the finest cocktail creator in the world. The Glasgow and Edinburgh heats of the 42Below Vodka cocktail World Cup took place at…