I have good news! Edinburgh dining is not all about haggis, tatties, and neeps (potatoes and turnips, for those who aren’t down with the Scottish lingo)! Edinburgh is home to some of the best eateries I have experienced during my travels, and I am so excited to share my list of top restaurants in Edinburgh with you all!
#1: Holyrood 9A
Holyrood 9A was recommended to me by my good friends that discovered it while on their honeymoon. I am forever grateful to them because this quickly became my absolute favorite place to eat in Edinburgh! I have only been to Holyrood 9A for lunch and was always able to walk right in and immediately be seated.
Vibe: Casual, pub, laid back
- Order a flight from their wide range of tap beers. I find it is the best way to figure out which beer I like, and I also love having an assortment
- The burgers!!!! I LOVE cheeseburgers, and Holyrood 9A has the best burgers in Scotland! Try one, I promise you won’t regret it.
- This one is the most important.. listen closely. Order the Sticky Toffee Pudding! This is seriously heaven on a plate. Sometimes the cravings for this delicious dessert are so strong, that is makes me want to book a trip solely to eat this pudding. Get it, please… promise me!
#2: The Witchery by The Castle
Address: 352 Castlehill, Edinburgh EH1 2NF, United Kingdom
Phone: +44 131 225 5613
The Witchery by the Castle is one of the most famous restaurants in Scotland. It is located in a collection of historic buildings at the Edinburgh Castle gates and has two dining rooms you can choose from. The Secret Garden is the dining room I chose for my experience, and it was super elegant with an incredible painted ceiling and gorgeous decor. I recommend booking a reservation well in advance of your trip to ensure you get a seat at your desired time and dining room.
Vibe: Elegant, fine-dining
- If octopus is on the menu, I will never pass it up. The grilled octopus at The Witchery, was perfect. It was served with red cabbage & grape mousse, cabbage crisp, avocado & wasabi puree… and of course the plating made it look like a piece of art.
- For my main dish, I had the Roast magaret of Kype Muir duck that was served with a hazelnut parfait, braised red chicory, pomme dauphine. It was absolute perfection and it was nice break from the normal dinner of steak I tend to order.
#3: Michael’s Grill and Seafood
Address: 15-19 Jeffrey St, Edinburgh EH1 1DR, United Kingdom
Phone: +44 131 557 2635
I discovered Michael’s Grill and Seafood by accident on my first trip to Scotland. As I walked around trying to find somewhere to have dinner without a reservation. I happened to walk into Michael’s at the right moment because they had a table open situated right at the window overlooking the streets of Edinburgh. As soon as I sat down, I saw them turning away many people who walked in without a reservation, and then I proceeded to have the best meal of my trip!
Vibe: Casual, Chill
- Oysters, oysters and more oysters! Loch Fyne Oysters are delicious every time I have them…especially paired with a french martini… or two.
- This is my go-to place for a good steak. I noticed in the U.K. they really like to cook meat to medium or more. As a rare steak eater, biting into a perfectly cooked center cut filet after 7 days of overcooked meat was heavenly.
- I ordered the Bitter Dark Chocolate and Whiskey Pot on the last night of my most recent trip and it was the perfect ending to an incredible experience. It is warm and silky, and served with crispy almond biscotti… it was perfect.
#4: Cafe Andaluz
Address: 77B George St, Edinburgh EH2 3EE, United Kingdom
Phone: +44 131 220 9980
I rang in 2020 by celebrating Hogmanay in Edinburgh! I was so excited about the Hogmanay events I had lined up that I completely forgot to book a reservation for dinner on NYE. As I walked around the city, I discovered Café Andaluz. Café Andaluz is a Spanish restaurant that is both stylish and delicious. And they thankfully took my last-minute reservation on New Year’s Eve!
Vibe: Trendy, upscale but chill
– Obviously, you can’t go wrong with sangria from a Spanish restaurant. I sampled enough glasses that night to make me a pro at how good their sangria is!
– I love tapas because I like experiencing many different flavors and textures. The tapas offered at Café Andaluz was all perfectly delicious. My biggest tip is to order the bread as a side! Their bread was freshly baked and served with dipping oil. It was fantastic!
#5: The Dome – The Club Room
Address: 14 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 2PF
Phone: +44 131 624 8624
I learned about The Dome from a friend who lives in Edinburgh. Locals told me that if I go inside, I will view the most beautiful Christmas decorated restaurant. So off I went, thinking I could walk in. Well, that is not the case during the holiday season. Be sure to make a reservation, because not only is the view of the color-changing Christmas tree gorgeous, but the food is also delicious.
Vibe: Fine dining, Elegant atmosphere, but during the day, it was relaxed.
– How can you go to the U.K without getting fish and chips? Even though it felt odd to order this item in such a nice restaurant, it was so good!! I would highly recommend trying them here!
– Technically, this isn’t a menu recommendation, but ask for a table with a view of the focal point of the room, a giant Christmas tree erected right in the center of the dome, over the bar. I was mesmerized watching the lights during my lunch experience.
Honorable mentions of my other Top restaurants in Edinburgh :
– Mussel & Steak Bar ( www.musselandsteakbar.com )
Tip: Call for a reservation. I originally booked mine online (along with many others), and the restaurant does not accept online reservations, which left all those waiting for a long time or rejected at the door.
– Le Bistrot Pierre ( www.lebistrot.co.uk )
Tip: Tiny café that looks like nothing special. You will be pleasantly surprised when you see your beautifully plated food.
Do you have any top restaurants in Edinburgh you’d recommend? I would love it if you could share them in the comment section!