Yesterday I visited the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh, but won’t be writing this up on our Edinburgh As a Tourist section until a return visit when the full greenhouses are open to the public. Afterwards I called into the Botanic House Hotel for a very good bar meal and the obligatory couple of pints.
The Botanic House Hotel has a very nice basement bar that has a light modern feel to it and contains tables and chairs suitable for dining, but also comfy sofas and lower tables for enjoying drinks at. There’s a chic feel to it and the bar area fits in well with this hotels light and modern exterior. Just one guy manned the bar (it wasn’t busy at all when we arrived at 12pm) and he was extremely friendly and offered good service to us at the table.
The menu is fairly small and offers traditional bar fayre. For starter I had Haggis parcel with Drambuie sauce (Â£4.95). This was very decent and I wonder if the haggis came from Crombies, as sausages for main were from this Edinburgh supplier. For mains I had scampi and chips (Â£6.95). Although the chips did not live up to their chunky billing on the menu they were delectable crispy fries and the scampi was of good quality. My dining partner ate the Steak Frite with fries and salad (Â£7.95) - this was very good too.
The star of the show however was my chocolate brownie desert, that was absolutely brilliant. It was perfectly warm, and just nice and gooey in the centre - just how I think a chocolate brownie should be.
One slight downside was the only draft lager was Tenants or Budvar. I was happy enough drinking the Budvar, but for the quality/atmospheric nature of this bar you would have expected a few more premium lagers. Maybe their usual clientele drink beer by the bottle though.
As the weather was having an unpredictable day no-one was sat in the beer garden outside. However this was pleasant and quiet enough with a scattering of wooden tables and benches. It definately looked one of the most plesant beer gardens I have seen in Edinburgh centre, and it’s always nice to have a beer garden with actual grass underfoot.
Overall the Botanic House Hotel looked a good bar and I would be interested to see how busy it gets. The meal we enjoyed here was of very good standard for bar food, and I would have no hesitation in recommending a stop off here should you be visiting Edinburgh’s Royal Botanic Garden, or should you just want to try somewhere different and off the traditional path.
I look forward to sinking a few pints in their beer garden over summer!