65 Henderson Street, Edinburgh, EH6 6ED
  • Telephone 0131 555 7019
  • Seasonal times Open later at Hogmanay
  • Bar open Mon–Fri 2pm–1am; Sat noon–1am; Sun 1pm–1am.
  • Email
  • Website

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

Eating & Drinking Guide

The 2016 edition of The List's Eating & Drinking Guide is out now – only £5.95 (+p&p).

This review is taken from the current (2016) edition.

One of four Leith links in the chain of six Swedish independent bars across Edinburgh, expect their signature chummy welcome; bar staff make conversation if you’re waiting, and seem genuinely concerned that you enjoy a well-rounded social life. The small room (plus back room, available for private parties, for free) hosts a heaving events programme – clothes swaps, pub quizzes, nights devoted to knitting or playing Cards Against Humanity with strangers, plus a monthly Dog Day, where owners and pets do Sunday afternoon meet-and-greets. Drinks wise, they love special edition cocktails (Pimms cups, hot buttered rums, aquavit to sip on Swedish holidays) and stock single malts, rums and gins, plus a small selection of bottled and draught beers. What you won’t find is any food to soak up the booze (don’t blame us for not warning you), just bags of crisps and nuts, and free popcorn on movie nights. As they put it, Sofi’s bar just wants to be, ‘the port in the storm, the little squeeze in a hug, home from home.’

  • High point: Welcoming spot for catching up with friends, or finding completely new ones
  • Low point: Their snuggly, cutesy vibes may jar with the grumpy or nihilistic drinker
  • Provides: Wheelchair access, Free wi-fi
  • Music on stereo: Eclectic modern pop, chilled stuff in the daytime
  • Live entertainment: Film screenings every Monday. Also quiz nights, free daytime music sessions, see Twitter and Facebook for event info.
  • Capacity: 80 (60 seated)
  • Largest group: 40
  • Open since: 2005
  • Number of wines sold by the glass: 12
  • House wine: £14 per bottle

Reviews & features

Neighbourhood Watch: Leith, Edinburgh

21 Jul 2011

A beginner's guide to the capital's port town

What’s it like? It’s Leith. If you’re an Edinburgh List reader, it’s very likely you live there. Glossy bars, Michelin-starred restaurants and warehouse conversions squaring off against cobbles, pint’n’pie pubs and Hibees. Vibrant, community-focused (it…

Best bars in and around Leith

3 Jun 2010

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

Comments & ratings

2. Bristle663 Jul 2014, 5:05pm1 star Sofi's Report

Not impressed. Turned up at 1.45 pm to be told "We don't open until 2 o'clock". OK. Walk around scenic Shore at Leith for about quarter of an hour and return. Told "we don't do food apart from nuts and crisps." Why? No kitchen. We never have and never will do food. I see. My information is seriously inaccurate. This is supposed to be a welcoming place that provides basic food at a reasonable price. Maybe there is another Sofi's Bar in a parallel universe that does that kind of thing. Perhaps - but we don't run that one. So retreat to flat and contemplate an individual fruit pie. Dog clearly not attracted. So beans it is..

1. April Flowers19 Dec 2011, 1:01am5 stars Sofi's Report

I live round the corner from this wonderful little bar. Its the only bar I can walk in to and feel very comfortable. Smorgasboard is excellent and the chillie and nachos are excellent. Its a quirky, friendly, community bar with loads of activities for all.

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Average rating 3/5 from 2 reviews of Sofi's.

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