Starter platter

Starter platter

On a joyously bright evening, the Lunchquest beer team thought we’d take ourselves on a little tour of Old Town boozers to see what was new. This turned into something of a Grubcrawl Mark II.

Our beer exploring started at the Canon’s Gait where Our Beer Man and I started proceedings with some Grozet, while Our Beer Woman played with a New Zealand IPA. The place has had a smart recent refit, but it was quite quiet, as most people were outside enjoying the early evening sunshine, so we jogged on to venue number two.

Wings

Wings

Holyrood 9A is an established beer favourite and we had the usual fun and games deciding which items we’d try from their range. I was particularly pleased to get a go at Pilot’s Vanilla Shortbread, which was just lovely. I tried a cracking saison, too, and there were additional samplings of Chew Chew stout and Tempest’s Long White Cloud.

Hunger had struck by this point so we adjourned to Under the Stairs, via one of Edinburgh’s more terrifying alleyways.

Randall

Randall

This wasn’t a place I’d visited before, but Our Beer Woman knew the menu back to front. Her suggestion was to order the sharing starter platter, then see where that took us.

The Beer Man was highly distressed to be served a pint of Joker IPA in a panelled pint pot, but that was soon remedied for a straight glass. I played with the pint pot as I rather like them, but then I’m a heretic like that.

The grub proved to be pretty good. A pile of calamari and whitebait was tasty, the lentil and cashew pate was the standout item, and the tatties and lamb balls gave the platter good substance. We weren’t entirely sated, though, but thought we’d seek main course dishes elsewhere.

Secret beer face

Secret beer face

Wings was the unaminous choice because the beer folks were fans and I’d never been. The reason I’d never been is because I’m not really a chicken wings fan, so thought it pretty unfair to review a place where it seemed unlikely I’d find much joy.

We had three different types of wings, with blue cheese sauce, BBQ and lemon dry rub. The beerers were delighted, but they didn’t convert me to the chicken wing enthusiast camp. The place is quirkily decked out and is a great option for a quick bite on the run, but neither the chicken nor the sauces registered much on my interest scale.

We had a notion of rounding things out a Civerino’s for dessert, but our timing was poor. Instead our “pudding” was taken at Brewdog on the Cowgate, where the Jackhammer was being served through a fruit filled randall. It was a suitably zesty end to proceedings.

So overall, we sampled a grand selection of beers, had cracking good evening and ate a couple of decent dishes. I wasn’t blown away by the food at Under the Stairs or Wings, but they both served our needs very admirably. Where will Grubcrawl take us next, I wonder…?

Written by BKR