Category Archives: Lothian Road

Monboddo: swapping real ale for cocktails

The highlight of a Fizzytree at Monboddo is the orange sorbet
The highlight of a Fizzytree at Monboddo is the orange sorbet

What has happened to me? In recent weeks, I have twice had cocktails with male acquaintances. Surely it is too early for my mid-life crisis? Of course it is. By pure coincidence, circumstances have taken me to the Old Course Hotel in St Andrews and also to Monboddo on Edinburgh’s Bread Street. Both definitely more bar than pub but both very pleasant in their own special ways. Given that my focus here is Edinburgh, let’s talk about Monboddo, part of the Doubletree Hilton hotel. Continue reading Monboddo: swapping real ale for cocktails

Blue Blazer: brilliant boozer between books and boobs

The Blue Blazer sits in the shadow of Edinburgh Castle (far left)
The Blue Blazer sits in the shadow of Edinburgh Castle (far left)

The area in which the Blue Blazer sits in Edinburgh has always puzzled me somewhat. How did West Port and the surrounding area manage to become famous for two things: second-hand books and strippers? They seem odd bedfellows but they have co-existed for years and this fine old pub has no doubt served patrons of both types of establishment down the years. And served them well, as this is a great little boozer that I find myself visiting every few months for some reason or other.

Continue reading Blue Blazer: brilliant boozer between books and boobs

The Red Squirrel for pre-dinner drinks

The Red Squirrel, Lothian Road, Edinburgh
The Red Squirrel is looking bright-eyed and bushy-tailed on Lothian Road

I think I’ve decided that I’m more of a squirrel person than a bat person. Admittedly, I’m basing this purely on my two recent experiences of Lothian Road pubs. A couple of weeks ago, I visited the Hanging Bat but this week it was the Red Squirrel, further down Lothian Road towards Princes Street. And a pleasant, if slightly pricey, experience it was too.

It was Guy Fawkes Night and myself and Mrs Bar Fly had dinner booked at One Square, the main restaurant in the Sheraton Hotel. The reason for this was a free steak promotion but the less said about the rubbery mass of sinew we were faced with, the better. This is about the Red Squirrel. Continue reading The Red Squirrel for pre-dinner drinks

The Hanging Bat: where else in Halloween week?

The Hanging Bat has an impressive array of beers
The Hanging Bat has an impressive array of beers

The Hanging Bat’s been hanging around on Edinburgh’s Lothian Road for nearly a year now, moving into the old Mr Modos premises in November 2012. Appropriately, The Bar Fly was able to get along for the first time in the week preceding Halloween.

On a wet Saturday evening, the bar took a little bit of spotting with its muted frontage. Once in though, there’s no doubt the place is warm and inviting. The lighting, colourful original artwork and wooden furniture (the bar looks like it’s been beautifully made with what looked like a carved batman on every tap) makes the place feel cosy despite being spread over two floors. And these guys must be doing something right because the place was bustling even as early as 6.30pm. Continue reading The Hanging Bat: where else in Halloween week?