The Black Cat
This review is taken from the 2012 edition.
Too small to cater for Rose Street's busloads of bevvy-merchants, the Black Cat has instead managed to build up a loyal and more discerning following in the course of its first year. Owner Chris Miles is something of a whisky aficionado, and this is reflected in the extensive range of malts, many of which are mind-bogglingly obscure. There’s also an intriguing selection of beers, and the Tennents tap finds itself in unfamiliar territory – ousted to the bar’s outer fringes by Scotland’s more artisanal lagers and ales. The local theme also extends to the bar snacks and, while the likes of haggis balls and deep-fried Scotch pies might not sound appealing at first, here they are crispy and light on the grease. The native vibe is rounded off by live folk music on Mondays, Wednesdays and Sundays. This is contemporary Caledonia without needing to resort to clichés and kitsch.
- High point: The best of youthful contemporary Scotland
- Low point: Not everyone will be bowled over by Scotland's cuisine
- Provides: Vegetarian options (at least ¼ main courses), Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Wheelchair access, Outdoor tables, Free wi-fi
- Music on stereo: Classic rock
- Live entertainment: Live folk music Monday, Wednesday evenings and Sunday afternoons
- Capacity: 80 standing
- Largest group: 20
- Open since: 2011
- Number of wines sold by the glass: 15
- House wine: £6 per bottle