Late on a Friday night or chilling on a Saturday afternoon, you don’t want to choose between another pint of beer or a glass of the house wine. You’re looking for something different: a carefully-crafted cocktail, an evening of fun with friends. Edinburgh is known for its rich history and culture, but it’s also home to some of the best cocktail bars in Scotland – so without further ado, here’s a look at some of our favourite cocktail bars in Edinburgh that’ll serve you up the perfect drink!
1. The Devil’s Advocate
The Devil’s Advocate has an impressive collection of over 300 whiskies and slick cocktails, making it one of the top choices for a quick drink. Their Scottish inspired menu keeps on changing every month, so there’s something new for you to try on whenever you visit. Different lunch and evening menus give you tons of choices, and they also serve a wide range of desserts as well as beverages.
The bar itself is as eclectic as you could expect from a bar with such an interesting history: it boasts a Victorian pump house. Their award-winning bartenders serve innovative seasonal cocktails that you can’t miss out, on easily making it one of the best cocktail bars in Edinburgh.
Find The Devil’s Advocate at 9 Advocate’s Close, EH1 1ND. You can make an online booking on their official site.
2. Bramble Bar & Lounge
Bramble Bar & Lounge is a great bar for date nights; something about the combination of fantastic atmosphere, dimmed lighting, and top music sets a chill mood for your night. They use premium ingredients, perfectly balanced to create their cocktails, which are to die for. Fast service and their friendly staff are just another perk of the bar, which means it’s gotta be on your Edinburgh bucket list.
Find Bramble Bar & Lounge at 16A Queen Street, EH2 1JE. No reservations are needed here.
3. Panda & Sons
If you’re after a themed cocktail bar in Edinburgh that’s perfect for happy hours, look no further than Panda & Sons. A hidden bar fusing the classic Prohibition style with nods to a vintage style barbershop, this bar is known for its signature cocktails and its amazing interior design. The space is decorated with vintage furniture, which lends it a cosy atmosphere to relax in after a long day at work.
They have very interesting names for their cocktails – look no further than the ‘Paolo Appletini’ for this – and their menu explains the techniques used in making their signature drinks, which cocktail connoisseurs are going to love. Finally, a spot on the World’s Best Bars list in 2020 is the only seal of approval we need!
Find Panda & Sons at 79 Queen Street, EH2 4NF. Book tables online here.
4. Heads & Tales Gin Joint
Located underground down a set of stairs you could easily walk right by, Heads & Tales Gin Joint is a fantastic spot. Quirky and cavernous with a great atmosphere, the bar boasts an amazing selection of gins, each with recommended tonics and garnishes. Apart from gins, the joint has a wide range of cocktails and beers available for a chill evening.
Unsurprisingly, their great cocktail selection experiments with different gins to achieve the perfect drink. They’ve even got two stills installed in the bar – Flora & Caledonia – where you can watch the gin get distilled as you sip.
Find Heads & Tales Gin Joint at 1A Rutland Place, EH1 2AD. You can make a reservation here.
5. The Bon Vivant
The Bon Vivant is a European-inspired bar with an extensive wine and champagne list, plus a bar menu of snacks and mains. The idea is to have an informal dining experience with a high standard, and the wood interiors and warm lighting create an intimate atmosphere.
They use local products in their food and you can choose your tapas-style plates to suit all tastes. A neat selection of sours, highballs, and sippers will cater nicely for anyone hankering for cocktails, too.
Find The Bon Vivant at 55 Thistle Street, EH2 1DY. Book via their website.
6. The Voodoo Rooms
The Voodoo Rooms is an award-winning cocktail bar and restaurant in Edinburgh, with a cracking selection of drinks. It has a great atmosphere, splendid ornate ceiling, and live music is a regular feature.
Excitingly, they regularly organise events that will keep you entertained all evening; check the event calendar here for more information. Maybe you’ll even learn how to mix drinks from the experts?
Find The Voodoo Rooms at 19a West Register Street, EH2 2AA.
7. The Blackbird
Need the ideal spot to while away the afternoon? The Blackbird is a café bar with exposed stone interiors, serving modern Scottish dishes alongside cocktails and coffee. It’s good for a fun night out and has previously been voted one of the top 30 cocktail bars and terraces in the UK by The Times.
Best known for boasting the best beer garden in the city, their outdoor seating areas get popular in sunny weather, so it’s worth making reservations (they are wheelchair accessible, helpfully). If you’re looking for a drink with a difference, you must check out this place.
Find The Blackbird at 37-39 Leven Street, EH3 9LH. More on their website.
8. Never Really Here
Never Really Here is one of Edinburgh’s best quirky and cosy cocktail bars. The bar itself is small but they create an intimate feel with dim lights, eclectic music playing in the background, and live jazz on Friday nights.
Best of all, they serve up some amazing cocktails which are sure to tickle your taste buds! Both classics and more unique creations are on the menu here, so it’s never a bad idea to check it out.
Find Never Really Here at 89 Rose Street North Lane, EH2 3DX. You need to make an advance booking – message them on Instagram for a seat.