The Gardener's Cottage

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The Gardener's Cottage
1 Royal Terrace Gardens, Edinburgh, EH7 5DX
  • Telephone 0131 677 0244
  • Seasonal times Might extend opening during the festival
  • Food served Wed–Fri noon–2.30pm, 5–9.30pm; Sat/Sun 10am–2.30pm, 5–9.45pm. Closed Mon/Tue.
  • Email
  • Website
Photo of The Gardener's Cottage
The Gardener's Cottage

Unassuming, informal restaurant cooking exciting seasonal dishes using the finest produce.

Eating & Drinking Guide

The 2019/20 edition of The List's Eating & Drinking Guide is out now – only £5.95 (+p&p).

In this pretty former gardener's cottage, two modest dining rooms with communal tables are the simple setting for some glorious food. Ingredients are seasonal, sustainable and very local as they grow some of their own herbs and vegetables right outside: expect flowers, nettles, wild herbs and berries. During the day, there’s a set lunch and à la carte, while at night, it's exclusively the chef's menu (three or five courses, no printed menu, based on seasonality). The dishes are artfully presented, the cooking executed with skill and imagination, enhancing the excellent produce. The menu changes often, reflecting the best of what's available from land and sea. There may be freshly made tagliatelle topped with truffle shavings coated in a buttery sauce, cut by the salty tang of Doddington’s cheese, followed by a delicately seared, hand-dived scallop sitting in a deeply savoury broth of brown shrimp and razor clams. Vegetables are an integral part of the dishes; sweet, nutty Jerusalem artichoke, carrots and purple sprouting broccoli accompany a beautifully roasted roe deer. Flavours are deftly paired, such as the harmonious dessert marriage of dark chocolate with zesty sea buckthorn sorbet.

The List's rating






Yana Thandrayen visited The Gardener's Cottage on 6 February 2019
  • High point: Excellent seasonal cooking
  • Low point: You need to like communal dining
  • Notable dish: Roe deer
  • Average price: £15 (set lunch); 6 courses £60; matched wines £40 (set dinner)
  • Private dining: 10 or 20 (either of the two rooms can be booked privately)
  • Provides: Vegetarian options (at least ¼ main courses), Children's high chairs, Outdoor tables
  • Music on stereo: Mixed bag being played on turntable
  • Capacity: 31
  • Largest group: 31
  • Open since: 2012
  • Number of wines sold by the glass: 16
  • House wine: £28 per bottle
  • BYOB: £15 corkage

Reviews & features

Best Scottish restaurants in Edinburgh

22 May 2019

The city's top Scottish restaurants prove there's much more to local food than haggis and whisky

Dynamic. Creative. Resourceful. Pleasurable. Scottish dining displays the joys and range of Scotland's plentiful larder, with a distinctive identity and attention to detail. Whether you're exploring the city's collection of Michelin stars or just…

Table Talk: Edward Murray on how architects and diners can be friends

4 Jul 2016

Ex-architect Edward Murray talks about how food and architecture go hand in hand

I came to Edinburgh to study architecture and, on graduating, thought that was the career I would follow. Although lucky enough to get a job in a fantastic little office, it became slowly apparent that architecture wasn’t for me – I lacked the patience…

The List Eating & Drinking Guide Awards for 2013 announced

18 Apr 2013

Winners of the annual Best Newcomer Awards in Glasgow and Edinburgh

With the publication of its Eating & Drinking Guide for 2013, The List announced the winners of its annual Best Newcomer Awards. Selected from restaurants opening in Edinburgh and Glasgow since April 2012, the winners are chosen by the guide's…

Edinburgh restaurants Earthy Canonmills and The Gardener's Cottage excel in ethically sourced food

12 Aug 2012

Both Earthy Canonmills and The Gardener’s Cottage share a resolute focus on finding the best seasonal and local ingredients and then treating them as lightly as possible, along the way blazing a path for produce-led, accessible cooking. Is this the…