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Restaurants in central Edinburgh - what do you think?

London, UK
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Restaurants in central Edinburgh - what do you think?

We are coming to Edinburgh for 5 days for the Fringe in late August.

We need to be seated quickly, at the times I shall email to reserve, so we can have a meal & then go to another comedy show.

I am thinking of:

Near the Assembly Rooms:

- Valvona & Crolla Vin Caffe

- Dusit

Near Cowgate:

- Howie's, Victoria St

Near Bristo Square:

- Tower Restaurant, Museum of Scotland (no rush to leave that one)

Near Queen St:

- Ducks at Le Marche Noir (no rush to leave that one)

Do you think these are nice restaurants for an enjoyable/romantic meal (hubby & me), and will the service be quick enough (I have scheduled 1.5 hours for each of the first 3 meals!)?

Or do you prefer other restaurants, near those locations?

Thank you very much for your help.

Glasgow, United...
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1. Re: Restaurants in central Edinburgh - what do you think?


I don't know Dusit but all the rest are good.

If you explain when you get there when you need to leave I'm sure they'll understand - it is a very common issue!

Some Edinburgh restaurants don't take bookings during the festival, so worth checking if any of these have this policy. My favourite veggie place (David Bann) is one of these - but otherwise highly recommended.

Although not central, Martin Wishart at Leith is definitely recommended - gorgeous flavours.

I've not tried the Forth Floor restaurant at Harvey Nicols - but it looks well worth a visit - especialy if the weather gives good views.

have a great trip.

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2. Re: Restaurants in central Edinburgh - what do you think?

If you are after a restaurant near the Assembly Rooms consider Centotre, its the same Valvona and Crolla family and as usual its excellent.

I'm sure each restaurant will be able to turn you around in 1.5 hours, in fact i'm sure they will be delighted as most have 2/3 sittings during the festival anyway. Thats something to watch out for if you planning a nice meal somewhere you don;t want to be rushed, book slightly later and they won't hassle you.

London, UK
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3. Re: Restaurants in central Edinburgh - what do you think?

Thank you both for your other ideas if these fall through.

I am aiming to email to make our reservations, in mid July! I trust that will do it!

If restaurants won't take bookings, how can you be sure you will be seated in time to have a realxed meal & still make the next show? Or are those ones just rushing people through anyway?

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4. Re: Restaurants in central Edinburgh - what do you think?


For some of those restaurants, mid July may be too late for peak Festival bookings - I'd get in contact sooner rather than later. Generally, there are so many people in Edinburgh during the Festival that restaurants can be assured of being fully booked whether or not they take reservations. And so many restaurants go non-reservation during festival time.

if you are really going to be going from show to show, you might be better trying some of the smaller, less expensive cafes which serve great food. You don't want to rush good food, and if a show goes late etc. you might find yourself rushing through a lunch.

The Tower limits you to either 2 or 3 hours at dinner, depending on the day of the week and time (earlier seatings are 2hrs, later are 3hrs). They also require you to reconfirm booking a a day or two before the date, and require a credit card number if you book online, and will charge you for a no-show.

My experience with the Tower was that the food was excellent, but the service did not match up, despite the staff clearly having been carefully trained. Our main course was very late, our desert drinks never arrived and then we were overcharged by more than £100, though we fortunately realized this prior to paying the bill. This may have been a bad night, but it's a shame because first impressions are very important.

VinCaffe is actually on Multrees, which is a bit of a walk from from the Assembly Rooms, but certainly doable. Not sure I'd want to rush that fine food experience though.


London, UK
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5. Re: Restaurants in central Edinburgh - what do you think?

Thank you Kate

I was thinking of booking the Vin Caffe at 6.45 pm on the Tuesday, where the show at the Assembly Rooms does not start until 9.00 pm.

How long is the walk from V.C. to A.R. please? Would the above timings make it? I could make my reservation for 6.30 pm - should I?

Bearing in mind we are coming the final week of the Festival (20-25 Aug) when do you think I should reserve our dinner tables?

Also I am assuming we just need to reach all the comedy venues around 10 mins max before each show starts. Is that true or should we get to each one earlier?

Thank you all for all your help.

Edinburgh, Scotland
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6. Re: Restaurants in central Edinburgh - what do you think?

You should be able to walk from Vin Caffe to the Assembly Rooms in 10 minutes.

As someone else said in an another post, try to make your reservations as far in advance as you can - if you can make reservations. I don't think it really matters which week of the Festival you'll be here - it will be busy.

If you run into difficulties with the places that you've picked out and you need to consider alternatives, some of Edinburgh's better restaurants belong to an association and you might want to check the options. Their website is http://www.edinburghrestaurants.co.uk/

7. Re: Restaurants in central Edinburgh - what do you think?

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