It didn’t take very long for me to notice that Edinburgh is a foodie city. Whether you’re walking the streets of the New Town or the Old Town, you can’t go more than a few steps without a coffee house, local eatery, fudge shop, cozy pub, or gourmet restaurant catching your eye.
I did my fare share of eating and drinking while in Edinburgh, and one experience that stands out was a guided food tour of the city with Eat Walk Edinburgh. They offer tours that combine food sampling with a bit of sightseeing, so that you can get to explore the city and also enjoy its unique flavours.
Eat Walk Edinburgh offers two different tours and I did the Canongate tour which runs along the lower part of the Royal Mile and lasts roughly 3 hours. Along the way we got to meet shop owners, try new foods, and explore some little side streets that we wouldn’t have otherwise found. Here’s a quick breakdown of that tour:
Our tour started out at the Itchycoo Bar & Kitchen inside the Radisson Blu. The Itchycoo which has a modern feel and looks out onto the Royal Mile. Here, we were met by our guide and had a quick introduction as to what the day would hold. Since this is a food tour, it wasn’t long before we had some food in front of us! First up, we had mini haggis sliders as well as grilled skewers with mushrooms and tomatoes. I paired this with a virgin Bloody Mary since it was still quite early in the morning!
Address: 80 High Street
Cranachan and Crowdie
From there we walked down to Cranachan and Crowdie, a little shop along the Royal Mile that works with more than 300 suppliers from across Scotland to bring you some quintessential Scottish food and drink souvenirs. If you have any foodie friends or family back home and you want to get them a cool souvenir, you’ll definitely find it in this shop! They have jams, chutneys, chocolates, shortbread cookies, teas, cheeses, and so much more. If you’re looking for something unusual bound to give people back home a giggle, pick up a bag of ‘Puffin Poo’ – it’s really white chocolate rolled in coconut and it comes from the Shetland Islands.
Address: 263 Royal Mile
The Fudge House
Now this next one is for anyone with a sweet tooth. The Fudge House specializes in one thing alone and they do it well! They have 27 different types of fudge in the store, each handcrafted to perfection. I bet you want to know the flavours, right? Some of the ones that caught my attention include: Chocolate Rocky Road, Marzipan & Amaretto, Lemon Meringue Pie, Highland Cream, and Maple Pumpkin Spice. I ended up ordering the Peppermint Chocolate Fudge, which was gloriously sweet and refreshing.
Address: 197 Canongate
After filling up on fudge, we continued on to Cadenhead, which is a whisky shop and tasting room. Cadenhead is Scotland’s oldest independent bottler and if you’re a bit of whisky connoisseur, this place will be right up your alley. Their whisky is all single cask, it has no added colour, and it is not chill-filtered. We didn’t do a tasting while we were there, but we did walk away with a bottle of Campbelltown Loch Scotch blended whisky.
Address: 172 Canongate
Our next stop was a Scottish-Scandinavian fusion restaurant by the name of Hemma. The first thing that struck me was the bright yet cozy design; Hemma means ‘at home’ in Swedish and it really had a warm vibe from the minute we stepped in. While we had been snacking and sampling food at all of the previous establishments, this was our lunch stop and we had a giant Smörgåsbord to make you drool! There was potato salad, smoked salmon, beetroot salad, pickled herring, smoked ham, soft hard-boiled eggs, and lots of bread and butter to add to the mix. After all the walking we did around Edinburgh, we dove right in. Another thing I liked about this restaurant is that they are pet-friendly, which means I got to play with the pups!
Address: 73 Holyrood Road
Last but not least, we walked over to Holyrood 9a. The name of this establishment is the same as its address, so it’s pretty easy to track down. Having just finished lunch and thinking our previous stop was our last, we were stuffed beyond belief. Here we enjoyed a platter of Scottish cheeses as well as beers. Holyrood 9a offers 20 beer and ale varieties from across Scotland and around the world, so it’s a nice place to enjoy a pour or two. At this point in the tour, our guide bid us farewell and our group was free to hang out at the pub for as long as we wanted.
Address: 9A Holyrood Road
And that concluded our Edinburgh food tour with Eat Walk Edinburgh. We visited a total of 6 establishments on our tour, but there is a list of 8 that are covered on rotation, so if you do this tour you may experience a slightly different route. Our guide Julie was very informative and aside from introducing us to new dishes, she also filled the walks from one venue to the next with lots of stories. If you’re looking for a taste of Edinburgh, be sure to check it out!
Have you done a food tour in Edinburgh?
Do you have any favourite Scottish dishes?