This was the first pub in what turned out to be a 15 pub pre-Christmas bender with the lads. We knew it would be a big pub crawl, but nobody would have predicted what transpired. I expected us all to be home in our beds by 8pm after 6 or 7 pubs. It’s going to take me weeks to blog it all.
Anyway, we started in The Southern because we knew the food would be good and hearty and we’d get a decent pint to start us off. Their main shtick is great beer and a range of burgers. There are some “meet the brewer” nights as well as an annual homebrew competition where the winner gets their beer brewed by Stewart’s, the last one being First World Problems.
Inside the decor has an slight air of sophistication, similar to the Holyrood 9A, one of its sister pubs (it’s a Fuller Thomson pub). It’s all dark wood, white walls, leather seats, some foliage, the odd stag’s head and other trinkets. There are a few interesting photos on the walls showing some of the pub’s past glories in a previous incarnation. One in particular comes to mind, a shot of Kurt Cobain and co playing in the pub back in the 90s when it was a live venue. Or am I getting my wires crossed, and I just saw these photos online somewhere?
As for clientèle, I’ve seen all sorts in here, from youngsters to old timers, hipsters to office types, and plenty of locals. Even the dogs people bring in come in all shapes and sizes. There’s one particular dog, about the size of a small car, with pitch black fur that absorbs all light. I wouldn’t be surprised if it was the inspiration for the aliens in Attack The Block.
A good choice of beers, the guests being relatively rare in Edinburgh. The casks on this visit: Clyde Puffer Oatmeal Stout, Pilot Ice Tea Ale, Tynebank Black Cascade, Redwell Julöl. Guest kegs: Flying Dog Imperial Pumpkin Ale, Innis & Gunn Lager, Thornbridge Chiron, Cromarty Red Rocker. I missed out all the non-guest beers when taking notes, but according to their menu there’s also Williams Draught, Black Ball Stout, Joker IPA, Caesar Augustus; Caledonian Deuchars, Belhaven Best, Peroni, Pilsner Urquell, Innis & Gunn Original, Blue Moon, Aspall Cyder, Stella Artois, Cobra and Kozel.
I’ve no record of the round but the average of all of the above was around £4.05 per pint, not including the imported Flying Dog at £3.75 per half pint or the I&G Original at £5.95 a pint.
The burgers are good here with a choice of around 20 ranging from £8 to £10 including chips. The cooked breakfasts (served until 5pm) looked great, I was envious. Iain’s caesar salad was the meatiest salad I’ve ever seen in my life. The full menu’s on their website, linked below.
Board games. There’s a fireplace but I can’t remember whether it’s functional or not.