The best of the best suggestions for dining in Edinburgh
Scotland’s capital is undoubtedly one of the best UK cities for food and drink. From Michelin stars and award-winning restaurants to unique and romantic venues, Edinburgh is a foodie’s heaven. If you’re looking for somewhere to celebrate a special occasion, take a look at some of our favourite places to experience Scottish fine dining at its best.
Fhior, an adaptation of the word for ‘true’ in Gaelic, was opened on Broughton Street in June 2018 by Scott and Laura Smith, previously of Norn. Their vision was to create a dining experience that is reflective of the restaurant’s namesake. Their philosophy is based on the fact that serious food and wine should not only be accessible, but also be playful and light-hearted. At the heart of everything they serve is sourcing and this is Fhior’s primary focus, with the emphasis on highlighting a key ingredient in the peak of its season. Fhior offers three menus – dinner, lunch and a bar menu.
2. The Gardener’s Cottage
Set in a quaint 1836 cottage in the Royal Terrace by Calton Hill, this venue is a storybook escape off one of Edinburgh’s busiest roads. Come here for a magical foodie experience and bring the whole family too – because The Gardener’s Cottage is child friendly! Enjoy communal dining on long tables and the best of seasonal cooking in the city. Great for lunch or for the tasting menu at dinner time. A new venture and the first restaurant on Calton Hill, is The Lookout by Gardener’s Cottage which opened in November 2018. In addition to amazing food, this venue also offers breath-taking views across the Firth of Forth and the city skyline. Open five days a week, this is a perfect location for a relaxed dining experience.
3. The Kitchin
Tom Kitchin’s Michelin starred restaurant is located along the Leith waterfront and is one of Scotland’s most treasured dining spots. Plan well in advance to ensure you get a table though as the chef’s tasting menu is popular all year round. The menu is known for its excellent execution of Scottish produce, delivering a modern take on British cuisine whilst taking influences from French cooking techniques.
4. Restaurant Martin Wishart
Awarded with a Michelin star since 2001 and multiple other awards and accolades, this is one of Edinburgh’s most highly acclaimed dining venues. The Edinburgh-born chef has trained under the likes of Albert Roux, Michel Roux Jr. and Marco Pierre White, and brings his wealth of knowledge in French cooking techniques to the city’s gastronomy scene. There is a 6 or 8-course tasting menu available, as well as a lunch menu for £32 per head. Being a proud Scot, he likes to use Scottish produce and has built lasting relationships with many of his suppliers.
Paul Kitching’s 21212 opened in 2009, scooping up a Michelin star just one year in. It’s the only Michelin star venue in Edinburgh with rooms, making it ideal for a romantic weekend stay. There’s a lunch and dinner service, with everything from haggis risotto and garlic smoked figs to potted chocolate shortbread and a cheeseboards.
For hipster foodies who are into ‘hygge’, Timberyard is a must-visit the next time you’re in Edinburgh. It oozes Scandinavian charm in décor and style, yet the larder is strictly Scottish. The venue is set in an authentic brick warehouse with a south-facing yard for sunny days and a wood burning stove for colder nights. Indulge in local flavours (such as Scots lovage or fresh mussels) all within a modern, relaxed and comfortable dining space. Offering private dining for up to 10, our growing patch provides many herbs and edible flowers, while additional ingredients are supplied by small, local, artisan growers, breeders, producers, suppliers and foragers.
7. Cranston’s at the Old Waverley Hotel
Located on the first floor of the Old Waverley on Princes Street, Cranston’s is an elegant venue with wonderful views of the city. The menu is created with locally sourced and organic ingredients, with prices starting from just £9.95 for a single course at lunchtime. Perfect for fine dining on a budget, and a great place to bring the whole family.