129 Fountainbridge, Edinburgh, EH3 9QG
  • Telephone 0131 290 2500
  • Opening times Mon–Fri 10am–midnight; Sat & Sun 10am–1am.
  • Bar open Sun–Mon 10am–11pm; Tue–Thu 10am–midnight; Fri/Sat 10am–1am.
  • Food served Mon–Sun 10am–10pm.
  • Email
  • Website www.bodabar.com/akva/
Photo of Akva
in association with
Birra Moretti

Edinburgh's Swedish chain's biggest venture, this canal-side spot has homely food, plenty of drink and family friendliness.

Eating & Drinking Guide

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

Edinburgh's Swedish presence has grown considerably over the years. What started many moons ago with Boda bar on Leith Walk now includes several other bars in the city – the biggest of which is Akva. The bar's physical presence is its main strength: it's big, bright and beautifully situated next to the Union Canal. The menu has all the Swedish touches you'd hope for (would you like some hasselback potatoes to go with that smörgåsbord?), but it's also full of filling foods, such as the house beef burger, homemade soups and pan-fried salmon. If you're just in for a drink, there's a good range of craft beers, ciders and cocktails to choose from. Cider drinkers especially are well catered for. Weather permitting, try and grab a seat outside: the beer garden is well-kitted out, close to the bar, and you can feed any leftover Manna House bread to the canal's family of ducks.

  • High point: Spacious, family-friendly atmosphere
  • Low point: Not much choice for dessert
  • Notable dish: Plank steak
  • Private dining: 250 upstairs
  • Provides: Vegetarian options (at least ¼ main courses), Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Wheelchair access, Outdoor tables, Free wi-fi
  • Live entertainment: Live music on Sun, quiz on Tue, open mic on Wed, DJs Thu–Sat, ping-pong championship at 6pm on Sun.
  • Capacity: 550 standing, 250 seated, 300 outside
  • Largest group: 500
  • Open since: 2015
  • Number of wines sold by the glass: 14
  • House wine: £14.30 per bottle