It’s no surprise that the oldest restaurant in Edinburgh is a pub, and a fun one at that.
We took a cab to the “village” of Duddingston, just on the other side of Arthur’s seat, barely outside the main downtown of Edinburgh (think: leafy close-in suburb). The place is an adorable and picturesque stone building. There’s a lovely beer garden outside and skittles, their version of bowling of sorts. Of course, it was too chilly for the outdoor seating when we visited at the end of May, but you could see how it would be a fun outdoor hangout in warmer weather.
We sat in the pub part, as opposed to the upstairs which was more restaurant-y. It was a mix of some tourists, but also locals, parents with kids (fish fingers!) and others.
Their greeting to customers? Are you here for eating or drinking? Why, both.
I had the roasted chicken which was good, along with an Innis & Gunn. I wasn’t sure what it was exactly, but I had seen it at other places, and wanted to give something local a try. The menu described it as beer aged in a Bourbon barrel, and I could definitely taste the sweetness and oak. While it was a bit heavier than what I would normally drink, it was good with the chicken, and probably most of the other food on the menu.
Definitely a fun (filling) meal, and we enjoyed the cool feel of the pub.
It says 1360 over the door and on the t-shirts the staff wear. That makes The Sheep Heid Inn the oldest of the oldest restaurants I’ve visited. Of course, The Sheep Heid Inn says that there’s been *a* restaurant in that location since 1360, not necessarily that this is the descendant of such restaurant, so maybe why it’s not technically the oldest restaurant around?
In any case, it’s atmospheric – you could definitely imagine a darkened pub with a roaring fire and lots of ale being quaffed. You know, with Strider from Lord of the Rings sitting in the corner with his hood on, observing, smoking a pipe, sipping ale.
It’s easy to get to and from – go by cab and they’ll call you one for the ride back.
Good hearty food, lots of drink choices.
What’s not to like?