Edinburgh Eating Hitlist
The Elephant House
Most famous for being the place JK Rowling sat writing Harry Potter, but should really also be famed for their affogato (very strong espresso served over ice cream).
21 George IV Bridge (E5), 0131 220 5355, www.elephanthouse.biz, open daily 8am-11pm.
The Forest Café
Serving vegetarian and vegan food, this charming little café doubles up as a creative workspace. It’s cheap, tasty and feels a bit like home.
3 Bristo Place (F5), 0131 220 4538, www.theforest.org.uk, open daily but times vary (phone to check).
The Baked Potato Shop
The first part is easy: you fancy a baked potato - but it’s picking just one filling from the many delicious choices that’s difficult. Repeat visits are therefore a must.
56 Cockburn Street (F4), 0131 225 7572, open daily 9am-9pm.
Great British classics, like bangers and mash, served with a twist in this retro-themed diner. Mash-sampling is essential, as is face-stuffing.
4a Forest Road (F5), 0131 225 7069, www.monstermashcafe.co.uk, Mon-Fri 8am-10pm, Sat 9am-10pm, Sun 10am-10pm.
The place to go for your midnight munchies, Favorit is worshipped for its late night opening hours – nachos, paninis and waffles somehow taste even better at one in the morning.
19-20 Teviot Place (F5), 0131 220 6880, Sun & Mon-Thu noon-1am, Fri & Sat noon-3am.
Wholesome vegetarian and vegan food, done the organic way – with plentiful salad bar options, as well as warm specials. They do some mean puddings too.
94 Hanover Street (E3), 0131 225 2131, www.hendersonsofedinburgh.co.uk, Mon-Sat 7.30am-11pm, closed Sun.
The Mosque Kitchen
Hidden behind the Mosque is this little open-air café, serving authentic homemade food under a central canapé. It’s the perfect little retreat.
Central Mosque, 50 Potterow (F5), 0131 667 1777, Sat-Thu 11.30am- 7pm, Fri noon-1.20pm & 1.40pm to 7pm.
An African restaurant with a no-corkage BYOB policy, serving food that is delicately spiced and usually greedily devoured – yet somehow it remains a bit of an undiscovered gem.
6 Chapel Street (F5), 0131 667 8200, Mon-Fri 10am-4pm & 6pm-10-pm, Sat 11am-4pm & 6pm-10pm, Sun 6pm-10pm.
A little Turkish café perched on the shores of Leith, serving up a Mediterranean feast of kofte, Moussaka and spanakopita. The highlight is the Mezze platter; made for sharing, but you’ll probably want one all to yourself.
77 The Shore, Leith, 0131 554 5502, www.cafetruva.com, open daily 9am-6.30pm.
Mamma’s American Pizza
Sometimes there’s just nothing that can hit the spot quite like a pizza. At Mamma’s you can customize your pizza to your own secret recipe.
28-30 Grassmarket (E5), 0131 229 7008, www.mammas.co.uk, Sun-Thu noon-11pm, Fri & Sat noon-midnight.