Another guest post from Russ, cheers guv!
Many years ago we went here. Ever since that day we have all had the same memory of the place: a sweaty, noisy hole with sticky floors with broken glass on them. As a result we had never been back. This is a shame as, on this visit it was very different to the bad old days.
The interior was quite nice, a fairly narrow room, with the bar running down one side. There is an area at the back, behind wooden slats, which I don’t remember being there. The night we were in this area was used as the dining area. There was a piano in main bar area, which leads me to think that they probably have live music/singing, of the pleasant background variety rather than the ear bleeding “I wish I wasn’t here” variety.
When we were in the bar area was dead. Completely dead. As in I don’t think there was anyone in. The dining area however was quite busy, I think mainly because there was some sort of Groupon deal on. Talking of food, we ate here. The food was very well priced. Burgers from £7. Sharing (who does that) beef nachos for £7.50. Several pasta dishes at £7.50. Steaks from £15, and a bunch of other stuff. To be honest, given the prices, I’m not sure any of us were expecting much. But as with expectations of the venue, we were very wrong. The food was all decent. Amazingly at lunchtimes the prices are almost half!
Can’t remember anything about the round of drinks, which suggests it was just average in terms of prices. Beers on tap were Mahou (never seen that before), Carlsberg, Staropramen, Belhaven Best, Guinness and Thatcher’s Gold cider.
[Kegs: Mahou, Carlsberg, Staropramen, Belhaven Best, Guinness, Thatcher’s Gold cider. A Belhaven Best, a Guinness, a Carlsberg and a Mahou came to £15.10, so around £3.78 per pint – Dave]
There was something about the toilets here. Something about the hand dryers. I used to like the hand dryers in the abbotsford because they had a blue LED in them that lit your hands up. These ones had a blue led, and something else, and I can’t for the life of me remember what the something else was. But we all commented on it.
Staff were friendly and fairly chatty. The music was mostly innocuous pop drivel (can you tell I edited that? Dave), saved only by Carly Rae Jepson “Call Me Mabye”.
All in all, if you have bad memories of this place, or have never been, give it a(nother) shot. It’s in a good location, the food is well priced and tasty, and I’d give it the thumbs up. (not from a beer perspective particularly, just from “that was awright that was” perspective).
Facebook: Madogs Bar Edinburgh (not kept up-to-date, next to useless!)