Six Edinburgh Bars Not to Miss at Tales on Tour 2018
We’re counting down the days until Tales on Tour 2018 descends upon Scotland’s capital city of Edinburgh for a four-day festival of educational seminars, tastings and celebration of its thriving cocktail community. Historic Edinburgh is home to just a few thousand more citizens than New Orleans, and while they may have fewer watering holes than Tales of the Cocktail’s hometown, there are plenty of spots with the skills and nuance to rival the best in Nola and the world over. Here’s a selection of just a few at the top of their game.
A cozy, low-light atmosphere may suggest casual drinking, but the innovative and skillfully executed original elixirs on the menu appeal to enthusiasts with appreciation for expertise. The often changing menu runs the gamut from classic riffs like the Celery Sour and Crystal Mojito to edgy originals like the tequila-based Lazarus Lane with blackberry and rosemary shrub. Aside from Bramble, Mothership also runs The Lucky Liquor Co. and The Last Word Saloon.
Bramble is open 4PM to 1AM
16A Queen St, Edinburgh EH2 1JE
Phone: +44 131 226 6343
The Lucky Liquor Co. is open 4PM to 1AM
39A Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 3NH
Phone: +44 131 226 3976
The Last Word Cocktail Saloon is open 4PM to 1AM daily
44 Stephen Street, Edinburgh EH3 5AL
Phone: +44 131 225 9009
“Arrive as friends, leave as family” is the slogan and culture at Kin. Jody Buchan and Sam Baxendale bring the warmth and master touch to their bar, a newcomer to the Edinburgh scene that opened in late fall of 2017. Locals have touted Kin as an easy favorite for the duo’s inclusive and open demeanor and fun approach to the drink selections. We can’t wait to see the fresh menu they’re working on for Tales on Tour 2018.
Kin is open Wednesday through Sunday 4PM to 1AM
1 Barony Street, Edinburgh, EH1 3SB
Stacked on two floors including an underground room with exposed stone wall and cozy alcoves plus a bar on each level, Nightcap serves up booze-loving bites like burgers, ribs and wings alongside a smartly curated and well-composed cocktail list. Slightly different vibes on each floor blend seamlessly into one when the crowds gather.
Nightcap is open 5PM to 3AM daily; kitchen open until 3AM
3 York Place, Edinburgh, EH1 3EB
Phone: +44 131 556 5481
From internationally renowned bartender Iain McPherson comes this modern day speakeasy behind a barbershop front with a secret bookcase disguised entrance in the basement. Snag a leather backed chair and settle in for exceptionally executed classics and whimsical originals like Iain’s own Siam Saoco made with Barcardi, roasted coconut water, Thai sweet basil, salt and agave, paired with lightly salted popcorn.
Panda & Sons is open Monday through Friday 4PM to late, Saturday and Sunday 3PM to late
79 Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 4NF
Phone: +44 131 220 0443
Stuart McCluskey’s flagship restaurant is as well respected for it’s refined fare as its stellar bar program, which features a martini spin-off each month in addition to original craft cocktails and a glass-pour driven wine list. Check out their sister restaurant The Devil’s Advocate for a similar approach uniquely executed with a trove of 300-plus whiskies from around the world.
The Bon Vivant is Open 12PM to Midnight, kitchen closes at 10PM
51 Thistle Street, Edinburgh EH2 1DY
Phone: +44 131 225 3275
The Devil’s Advocate is open 12PM - 1AM daily with lunch served until 3PM and dinner server 5PM-10PM
9 Advocates Close Edinburgh EH1 1ND
Phone: +44 131 225 4465
As the story goes, Buck was a philanthropist, polo player and loyal travel companion to Prince Albert Victor, grandson of Queen Victoria, who traversed the globe before returning to his Scottish homeland in 1900. The cocktail menu of self proclaimed “rare and twisted” libations is built upon the imagined flavors, emotions and people Buck encountered on his journeys and spread across four key cities - Delhi, Saint Tropez, Kyoto and Casablanca - as inspiration. There’s also a Milan menu and breakfast served until 4PM weekends, plus lunch and dinner. Superior cocktails and service are cornerstones.
Voyage of Buck is open Monday through Wednesday 10AM to Midnight, Thursday to Sunday 10AM to 1AM
29-31 William St, Edinburgh, EH3 7NF
Phone: +44 131 225 5748
For more information about Tales on Tour Edinburgh, or to purchase tickets, click here.
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