Best bars in and around Leith

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Best bars in and around Leith

David Pollock suggests the finest locations for a festival beverage, or two

Leith’s four popular, Swedish-owned bars are a pub-crawl in themselves. Starting off at the very top of Leith Walk there’s Joseph Pearce’s (23 Elm Row, 0131 556 4140), which serves full meals through the day. Halfway down the Walk and separated by only a block are Victoria (265 Leith Walk, 0131 555 1638) and Boda (229 Leith Walk, 0131 553 5900), both of which offer inventive drinks and nibbles menus in stylish surroundings, while down by the Shore Sofi’s (65 Henderson Street, 0131 555 7019) is a popular neighbourhood haunt with themed event nights every week. (See www.bodabar.com for information on all four bars).

These are highlights, but not all the area has to offer. The Roseleaf (23/24 Sandport Place, 0131 476 5268, www.roseleaf.co.uk) is a wonderful pub overflowing with character, which serves very good food and cocktails in china tea sets, while the large Bond No.9 (84 Commercial Street, 0131 555 5578, www.bondno9.co.uk) fills as much space as it can with possibly the best spirit bar you’ll find in Edinburgh. The Pond’s (2-4 Bath Road, 0131 467 3825) warm welcome and large beer garden makes it a destination for drinkers from all over town, and The Village (16 South Fort Street, 0131 478 7810, www.bevillage.com) is a pleasant local bar with regular folk gigs in its back room.

Honourable mentions also go to the stylish iso-bar (7 Bernard Street, 0131 467 8904), Guilty Lily (284 Bonnington Road, 0131 554 5824, www.guiltylily.com) for the food and service, and the recently opened, cycling themed Tourmalet (25 Buchanan Street), while the team from the city’s excellent Blue Blazer has only just taken over the lease at the Windsor Buffet (45 Elm Row, 0131 556 4558).

Boda Bar

229 Leith Walk, Edinburgh, EH6 8NY

Convivial Swedish-themed watering hole that’s hard to find fault with.

Joseph Pearce’s

23 Elm Row, Edinburgh, EH7 4AA

Casual bar at the top of the Walk with Scandi food and an intimate vibe.

The Roseleaf

23–24 Sandport Place, Edinburgh, EH6 6EW

Welcoming destination pub with a chintzy clutter of board games, beer, healthy juices, comfort food and cocktails.

Sofi's

65 Henderson Street, Edinburgh, EH6 6ED

One of a group of six Swedish independent bars across Edinburgh; expect their signature chummy welcome and a heaving events programme.

The Tourmalet

25 Buchanan Street, Edinburgh, EH6 8SQ

Idiosyncratic Leith pub which has established a niche for itself.

Victoria

265 Leith Walk, Edinburgh, EH6 8PD

Easy-going, friendly Leith pub with wide appeal.

The Windsor

45 Elm Row, Edinburgh, EH7 4AH

Unassuming, laid-back boozer that will likely be here long after you’re gone.

Comments

1. Hellsbells90@hotmail.com5 Jul 2010, 3:17pm Report

If you're planning a trip to Leith then lets not forget The Vaults on Giles Street, home to The Scotch Malt Whisky Society. Think leather sofas, dark red walls and fires (along with hundreds of different SMWS whiskies to try). You do have to be a member to use their members rooms, but if you can't get signed in by a member then member for a day passes are available to buy at reception. And if you do decide to join, they'll give you the price of the pass back.

And of course The Port O' Leith, a colourful night is garaunteed!

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