#195: Brass Monkey, Drummond Street, Edinburgh

Brass Monkey, Drummond Street, Edinburgh (exterior)

We used to come here a lot for a few years after uni, Friday and Saturday nights were always busy, and back then they had table football through in the small back room. It hasn’t changed much in the intervening 12 years or so, except that the fusball table has gone.

On first appearances you’d think it was an old man pub with it’s light brown walls, dark wood furnishings and original cornice. On closer inspection you notice its more bohemian side, especially once you look through the back. The back room is not far off being one giant mattress, where you can lounge around with your feet up, perhaps watching a film on the big screen. The walls are plastered in movie posters old and new, real and fake. There are various other nooks and crannies to explore too, and some unique toilet arrangements.

For 6pm on a Tuesday, this place was positively jumping. The majority of the clientèle were youngsters in their early to mid 20s, but there were some older folk there too, perhaps even into their 60s. The music was really good, a selection of 60s soul classics. All in all a nice, relaxed atmosphere.

I don’t normally mention pub history, but I found this on flickr, an old advert for Fairbairn’s Bar, what is now the Brass Monkey, from what looks like the early 1900s. I like that kind of stuff.

The Bar

Brass Monkey, Drummond Street, Edinburgh (interior, bar)

Casks: Caledonian Golden XPA, Williams Brothers Cock O’ The Walk, Hadrian and Borders Secret Kingdom. Keg: Heverlee, Tennent’s Lager, Furstenberg, Guinness, Red Stripe, Kronenbourg 1664, Weihenstephan, Caledonian 80/-. Addlestone cider, Olde English cider.

I’ve no record of the price of our round, but it was certainly below £4. One of my photos shows “Tennent’s Lager £2.50”, and I can just make out “Pint Guest Ale £3…” something.


I don’t remember any food on the go, and they’ve got no website or social media presence, so I can’t cheat. However, some other online reviews mention food ranging from soup and a sandwich to curries, hot dogs and vegetarian and even vegan options.


The back room is available for private functions and I believe there are regular afternoon movie screenings. Pub quiz on Wednesday nights, 930. There are a few chairs and small tables out front on the pavement.

Castle View



Abolutely nothing.


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