Friday 16 August 2013

Yum Yum Yum - Edinburgh Festival Food

More Edinburgh Fringe loveliness - this time the food and drink we had!
Scottie Dog Shortbread
This delightful little Scottie Dog made of shortbread had a speedy journey on the train!
(there's no reason for this to be included - I just love the picture!)
In theory there's no shortage of places to eat and drink during the Festival, lots of them have extended hours and stay open til all hours of the day and night.
Ed Fringe have even put together a helpful Storify to direct you to the best places.
However...and it's a big however; this year places serving cheap and tasty takeaway food (which weren't the usual fast food chains) seemed few and far between. The thing is (and it's my own fault I know) I have our shows planned out so meticulously that when we need some dinner we might only have 30 or 45 minutes between shows to find somewhere, buy something and actually eat it. On top of that wherever we go for food needs to be fairly close to or on the way to our next show. Many of the venues do food themselves or have food stalls but despite smelling lovely, they do tend to be on the expensive side.
Finding a different place each night which ticked all our boxes? 
Frustrating, but thankfully not impossible; we didn't starve anyway!
So becuase I like lists (and I can revisit this next year myself so I don't forget) here's my tuppence-worth of some of the delicious fast-serving food outlets in Edinburgh...

Tempting Tattie
Probably our favourite place to eat at the Fringe, on Jeffrey Street just down from the Pleasance Courtyard. The only downside is that it doesn't seem to open very late but the cheeriness of the owner and the tastiness of the tatties makes up for it. You can take away your meal to eat wherever you want or you can sit on their small number of stools to peruse the latest Fringe reviews and magazines whilst tucking into your meal.

Pie Maker
A festival favourite, just along from C Venues (and not too far from the Pleasance Dome & Courtyard) and even open til 2am or 3am during the Festival.
A massive variety of pies, pasties and cakes at really cheap prices, the majority of items were only £1-£3 each. We went there about 9pm and they only charged us £1 for each pie. Andrew had a Scotch Pie and I had a (very yummy) Macaroni Cheese Pie.

Pie Maker pies

 A sandwich/baguette cafe, Bank Street
(I really can't remember the name of it, I know there were two cafes next to one another and this was the one on the left - if anyone knows what it's called, please, let me know!)
We popped in here about 9pm on our way to Assembly Hall to see Marcus Brigstocke and Rick Wakeman (not together, I hasten to add... although that would certainly make for an interesting show!).
We were in such a rush I forgot to take any photos but I think it was £3-£4 for a foot long baguette with lots of choices of fillings. I had a chicken, bacon and salad concoction which was very tasty. The baguettes also come wrapped up in greaseproof paper tied with twine!

Central Fish Bar
Kind of a festival tradition for us, on our first night in Edinburgh we always pop to Central Fish Bar at Teviot Place for a Sausage Supper (for me) and a Fish Supper (for Andrew). Now I can't remember them doing this last year, but each meal contained a portion of chips and two of each item, but they only charged us a total of about £7.50 for the two meals. I was stuffed eating all this so Andrew had to finish some chips and one of the sausages - which he managed with ease of course.

Sausage supper

Le Cafe Royal
We stumbled upon this little gem of a cafe after getting to Tempting Tattie a little bit too late and it had already closed. It's on Canongate which is just a little way from the Pleasance Courtyard. The front of the cafe opens out onto the street and the prices are reasonable for a sit down meal. They were fairly speedy with the service and we were in and out in less then an hour.
Andrew had Lasagne and I had Spaghetti Carbonara; they were both served with salad so we decided to be big fat pigs and added a bowl of chips to share. Our meals were £6.95 each and most other food on the menu was around the same price or not much more expensive.
They had some delicious looking cakes as well but the meals were huge and we were too stuffed to manage one!
Lasange and Spaghetti Carbonara

Honourable mentions...

Mums Great Comfort Food
We went there last year, loads of varieties of sausage, mash and gravy and all very tasty. However, we were trying to eat our dinner in less an hour before watching Susan Calman at the Underbelly and they took absolutely ages to serve us. We ended up running to the venue!
Really good but don't go if you're in a rush.

Aroma Cafe/Cafe Viana
(I'm sure this place was called Aroma Cafe when we went in, but Google Maps and the Post Office have it as Cafe Viana!)
Just along from C Venues, lovely friendly staff and a huge breakfast for a fiver - the plate seemed to contain 2 of everything! They also do large teas and coffees quite cheap and some nice cakes and biscuits.

Choco Latte
I love this shop, we discovered it by accident back in 2009 (at the end of a 2-week camping tour round Scotland). It's on South Clerk Street, a far way past the charity shops on Nicolson Street and as you step through the door, the smell of sugar, chocolate and sweets is just incredible.

Chocolatte chocolate gifts

There's just so many things to look at and it's really hard deciding what to buy - one of those shops where you say "I'll have that...oh and that...and one of them...and a couple of them...oh, and just chuck one of them in as well" - you know the sort!

Chocolatte chocolate animals

In the end we bought a Belgian Spaniel, a Cartoon Duck, two Chocolate Covered Marshmallows, one White Chocolate Flake Biscuit Slice and one White Chocolate and Strawberry Pig Biscuit Slice. We took the biscuits home to keep the Edinburgh magic alive one more day.

Chocolatte chocolate cakes and biscuits

Chocolatte chocolate biscuits

Popeyes Cafe and Another-Place-I-Can't-Remember-The-Name-Of Cafe, Portobello
(All I can remember about the second cafe was that it had 'Ice Cream Parlour' written on the sign and was opposite the bus interchange!)
Two great little cafes in Portobello on our bus route into Edinburgh. Delicious breakfasts from both, we went to Popeyes last year and the other one this year - £4.95 for a breakfast including tea and toast.

Scottish breakfast

Pleasance Dome Cafe
One of the few venues at the Fringe which seem to have reasonable prices, we love catching a quick 15 minutes in the Dome Cafe for an afternoon tea and cake - whilst getting flyered with leaflets and people trying to sell their shows. I love it, it's all part of the Fringe!

Tea and cake at the Pleasance Dome

And lastly...
Drummohr Holiday Park
Our holiday park for the week did a great line in freshly baked bread and crossiants starting from 60p; you have to order the night before and then collect anytime before 11am.

Pain au Chocolate
Warm Pain au Chocolate first thing in the morning - yes please! 


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