#16: Au Bar, Shandwick Place, Edinburgh

Au Bar, Shandwick Place, Edinburgh (exterior, front)

This place was a semi-regular haunt of ours for a while due to the good service, beer, food and peace and quiet. Then one of us read in the paper that they were filing for insolvency back in January due to business losses caused by the trams. That article and the Scotsman’s repeated articles referring to this must have lost them even more business. We didn’t bother to verify, and started going elsewhere. I don’t know the ins and outs of their insolvency, but they are most definitely still open and apparently going strong.

The bar has a sort of art deco thing going on, but not over the top. There’s also one of those jukeboxes that claim to be able to play anything from the UK Top 40 from the last few decades. Tonight we were treated to selections from some like-minded individuals with Pulp and Radiohead to name a couple. There was recently (earlier this year) a sign on the jukebox to the effect of “bar staff will skip inappropriate content”. We weren’t sure what they meant by that exactly, but NWA’s “Straight Outta Compton” didn’t get canned, and neither did Rage Against The Machine’s “F**k You I Won’t Do What You Tell Me”.

Beer

There were two guest casks on, namely Atlas/Orkney Golden Amber and Broughton Jeddart Justice. There is also regularly Harviestoun Bitter and Twisted, Stella Artois, Tennent’s Lager, Guinness, Staropramen and Caleonian Best.

A Guinness and two Golden Ambers was £11.30, averaging £3.75 a pint.

This is another place (recall the Bert’s writeup) that does table service, even for just beers. It’s really quite alien at first, but you get used to it, lazy even.

Food

Great food, especially for the price, though the portion sizes are a bit hard to predict. My gammon steak with spuds and veg was awesome (£8.55), and huge, yet Elaine’s goat’s cheese tart salad (7.25) was only reasonably sized. Tanya had a full Scottish breakfast (£7.25) and couldn’t finish it.

Castle View

Nope, too many hotels and financial behemoths in the way.

Au Bar, Shandwick Place, Edinburgh (interior)

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