The Safari Lounge
- Telephone 0131 661 4741
- Opening times Mon–Thu & Sun noon–midnight; Fri & Sat noon–1am.
- Seasonal times Late opening at Hogmanay
- Bar open Sun–Thu noon–midnight; Fri/Sat noon–1am.
- Food served Mon–Thu noon–9pm; Fri/Sat noon–10pm; Sun noon–8pm.
- Average price £14 (lunch); £14 (evening meal)
- Website www.thesafarilounge.co.uk
Beer fans and gluten-dodgers should consider making the trek to darkest Abbeyhill for this distinctive watering hole.
A quizzical eyebrow or two must have been raised when this safari-themed gastropub first opened its doors in Abbeyhill in 2013. Despite no opportunity being missed to continue with the African motif (including serving Mombasa Margaritas and Skeleton Coast punch), its quirky range of food, excellent selection of drinks and buzzy atmosphere combine to make a visit a seriously compelling proposition. With six permanent draught beers (including their own WEST Brewery lager) and a further four guest taps, you could be forgiven for overlooking the impressive Scottish and German bottled beer offerings. The short menu eschews run-of-the-mill burgers in favour of roasted bratwurst hot dogs and (gluten-free) tacos with fillings including pork belly with pickled vegetables and Asian mushrooms with kimchi. Look out too for the specials board where Safari Momofuku, their take on soft-steamed Asian buns, will frequently pop up. Little explorers are welcome until mid-evening and get their own menu, though there’s more space for buggies away from the narrow front bar area.
- High point: Tremendous selection of craft beers
- Low point: Weekends are busy so book ahead for food
- Notable dish: Jungle Brother Hotdog with beef and chorizo chilli
- Private dining: Up to 30 covers
- Provides: Halal options, Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Wheelchair access, Free wi-fi
- Music on stereo: Eclectic non-chart
- Live entertainment: Private DJ and band nights in the downstairs function room.
- Capacity: 100
- Largest group: 30
- Open since: 2013
- Number of wines sold by the glass: 9
- House wine: £14.75 per bottle