#114: The Grapes, Clerk Street, Edinburgh

The Grapes, Clerk Street, Edinburgh (exterior)

The Grapes is one of the few pubs we’ve been dreading because it looks a bit intimidating from the outside and has a bit of a reputation. We figured if we couldn’t do it after 5 beers, we never would. However, our fears were mostly unfounded, everyone seemed friendly. In fact one old fella gave up his seat to make room for us. Another old guy came over to tell us he was really happy to see a bunch of lads not all drinking lager.

It was reasonably busy inside (Saturday, around 6pm), full of locals, some for the football, some obviously recovering from shopping on the last Saturday before Christmas. There was mostly good music on for a while like Minnie the Moocher by Cab Calloway, Wild Thing by The Troggs, some old U2. But then Cher came on, so it was time to leave.

Here’s Russ’ notes on the interior: “Low maintenance decor (wipe clean?). Very well lit (reminiscent of Middleton’s on Easter Road [about 2 years ago], but a warmer light). 70s Christmas decorations.”

Pub 6 of 15 in our pre-Christmas bender. My dad made it this far but decided he’d best head off.

The Bar

The Grapes, Clerk Street, Edinburgh (interior, bar)

Despite finding the place a lot friendlier than expected, I still couldn’t bring myself to take a photo of the bar. On the right is the best Russ could manage while pretending to scratch his face. I don’t think he was fooling anybody.

No real ale, just Tartan Special, Tennent’s Lager, Belhaven Best, McEwan’s 70 and 80, Guinness, Stella Artois and Strongbow.

The round was £17.10 for 7.5 pints, so about £2.28 per pint. One of the cheapest on the tour so far.


We didn’t notice any food on the go, though Russ put down “Knuckle pie, fist sandwich,” making a bit of a meal of that joke. Boom boom.


With the variety of music on offer we suspected it had a jukebox, but I didn’t see one anyway.

Castle View





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