The Water of Leith Café Bistro

The Water of Leith Café Bistro
1 Howard Street, Canonmills, Edinburgh, EH3 5JP
  • Telephone 0131 556 6887
  • Opening times Tue–Th 9.30am–5pm; Fri 9.30am–9pm; Sat 10am–9pm; Sun 10am–4pm; closed Mon.
  • Seasonal times Extended seasonal hours.
  • Food served Tue–Sat 9.30am–5pm; Sun 9.30am–4pm. Closed Mon.
  • Average price £13 (set lunch); (set evening meal)
  • Website www.thewaterofleithcafebistro.com
Photo of The Water of Leith Café Bistro
in association with
Birra Moretti
The Water of Leith Café Bistro

Head for the specials menu at this friendly riverside spot where the food exceeds the expectations of a neighbourhood café.

Eating & Drinking Guide

The 2017 edition of The List's Eating & Drinking Guide is out now – only £5.95 (+p&p).

This riverside café-bistro aims to cater for all, whether you’re a busy office worker needing a quick takeaway, or you're catching up with friends for a relaxed three-course meal. Mickaël Meslé heads up the kitchen using locally and responsibly sourced ingredients, while wife Ana Meslé provides a warm, sincere welcome in the bright and cheery dining area. The breakfast menu comprises hearty dishes from the full Scottish to French crêpes, while for lunch, regulars include soup, steak and burgers. Daily specials provide more elaborate dishes, like duck confit with honey and rosemary jus and root vegetable gratin. Homemade cakes and desserts are tempting, such as pear and almond tart. Its moist, light sponge studded with sweet juicy pear chunks ensures that, despite the generous portions, joyfully devouring every last crumb is quite easy. Note that weekend set menus are available, kids' menus are offered, and special dietary requirements are well catered for.

  • High point: Sincere, warm and welcoming hospitality
  • Low point: Some dishes could be refined
  • Notable dish: Sweet potato, coconut, spinach and chickpea curry
  • Private dining: Rent out whole restaurant for set dinner menu (see their website)
  • Provides: Vegetarian options (at least ¼ main courses), Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Wheelchair access, Free wi-fi
  • Music on stereo: Jazz, new world, eclectic mix
  • Capacity: 45
  • Largest group: 45
  • Open since: 2009 / 2014 (in new location)
  • Number of wines sold by the glass: 7
  • House wine: £15 per bottle