Edinburgh has well and truly established its status as a foodie’s haven, with its culinary scene widely regarded as among the best in the world.
From traditional Scottish fare to innovative restaurants with famous chefs at the helm; here’s our selection of the city’s must-visit restaurants, all of which have been awarded at least two AA Rosettes for culinary excellence.
This former whisky warehouse in Leith’s docklands has been Tom Kitchin’s address since 2006. The sharp and striking interior is complemented with an innovative menu that presents modern British cuisine, influenced by French cooking techniques and crafted with ingredients from Scotland’s fine natural larder.
This sumptuous restaurant with rooms occupies a handsome Georgian townhouse on Royal Terrace. The name refers to the weekly-changing five-course menu format – a choice of two starters, mains and desserts, punctuated with one soup and one cheese course.
Modern Scottish cuisine meets world-class service at Number One. Chef Mathew Sherry and his team showcase the finest seasonal produce via a 7-course set menu, which diners enjoy in the opulently furnished lacquered dining room.
Understated on the outside, step inside Martin Wishart’s Leith restaurant to discover the coolly elegant interior. The style here is classic French with clear Scottish influences – choose between the tasting, vegetarian and market menus, all of which involve thoroughly fresh and vibrant dishes.
Set within one of the city’s most impressive hotels with iconic views up to Edinburgh Castle, Head Chef Dean Banks’ seasonal tasting menu showcases Scotland’s ample natural resources. A true sensory experience is on offer here, with diners being taken on a journey through Banks’ past travels and experiences.
True to its name, this former warehouse still gives the impression of an industrial space – which makes the high-level gastronomy on offer all the more delightful. The Scandi-influenced menu is underpinned with modern, bold and exciting flavours, using ingredients sourced from small artisan suppliers.
Although it might sound a bit sinister, this dungeon is far from unpleasant. On the outskirts of the city in a 13th-century fortress it’s a beautiful setting for some great cooking rooted in French classicism.
La Garrugue is just off the Royal Mile and close to Waverley station. A blue frontage, large windows and scrubbed pine floorboards; the setting for rustic French cooking.
Occupying the buzzy, informal dining room of the Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh – the Caledonian, Grazing by Mark Greenaway serves up a wide-ranging menu of solid, bistro-style cooking, where locally sourced ingredients are used to craft unique concept dishes.
Bringing the taste of Napoli to Edinburgh, Locanda de Gusti is indeed an ‘inn of taste’. Expect big-hearted, authentic cooking, where robust, no-frills food is matched by the painted brickwork, unclothed tables and Italian farm kitchen appeal.
Set just off the Royal Mile on the George IV Bridge, the main draw of Ondine Restaurant is its sustainably sourced seafood. Dishes are prepared in a way that celebrates Edinburgh’s multicultural influences – expect Fish Soup enhanced with North African flavours, Dunbar crab married with Spanish saffron, and more.
With its incredibly luxurious decor, Rhubarb at Prestonfield is a real stunner. Classical cooking mixes well with contemporary ideas in a far-reaching menu.
Dining experiences don’t get much more atmospheric than this oak-panelled restaurant at the gates of Edinburgh Castle. Choose between the Original dining room or the mystique of the Secret Garden dining room – an award-winning, traditional Scottish à la carte menu is served all day.