#199: Joseph Pearce’s, Elm Row, Edinburgh

Joseph Pearce's, Elm Row, Edinburgh (exterior)

Pearce’s is one of five pubs across town run by Boda Bars, although only Pearce’s and Hemma are within our tour, the rest are all in Leith. Just this week Boda Bars have won the British Institute of Innkeeping (Scotland) Bar Operator of the Year, up against Fuller Thomson (Holyrood 9A, Southern, Red Squirrel) and Lebowskis.

Joseph Pearce's, Elm Row, Edinburgh (interior)

The bar area has a very high ceiling and equally high windows, so when you walk in it seems quite grand, a bit like a hotel lobby. There are assorted tables and chairs and a few small sofas at street level where the bar is, and some larger tables upstairs (pictured right) more suitable for dining. Apart from the wallpaper, nothing else seems to quite match, giving it a certain homely quality, especially upstairs where it looks to me like somebody’s (large) dining room.

On our Tuesday night visit, 5:30, it was quite quiet, just a few couples dotted around. It felt quite relaxed. We were obviously too early though, it looked like a band was setting up at the front. Last time I was in here on a Friday night it was really packed, standing room only.

The Bar

Joseph Pearce's, Elm Row, Edinburgh (interior, bar)

Cask: Caledonian Deuchars. Keg: Murphy’s, Caledonian Three Hop, Heineken, Amstel, Birra Moretti, Kronenbourg 1664, Symonds cider.

It was £4 for a pint of Murphy’s.


Kids menu from £2 to £4, brunches from £3.90 for pancakes up to £9.70 for a steak sandwich, many “little bites” from about £3 for olives to £7.50 for Momofuko pork buns (sound good), and a few mains from £9.50 for gravad lax salad to £13 to loin of lamb, plus Swedish meatballs of course. I recommend the Hasselback potatoes, very tasty.


Over lunch and in the afternoons part of the upper level is set up as a “family-friendly haven”, stocked with toys and highchairs. It’s cleared away at 5pm.

There are tables and chairs out on the pavement in warmer months.

Castle View



Web page: Joseph Pearce’s
Facebook: Joseph Pearce’s Bar
Twitter: @JosephPearces
Parent: Boda Bars


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