Edinburgh’s Best Whisky
No visit to Scotland would be complete without a wee dram of Scotland’s national drink. Whisky is, after all, Gaelic for ‘water of life’.
So now Totally Tailored has welcomed you to the Scottish capital, it’s time for you to benefit from our days (and nights) spent sampling the best spots for the perfect dram.
The Totally Tailored Choice: The Scotch Whisky Experience
The Scotch Whisky Experience
Where: 354 Castlehill, The Royal Mile, Edinburgh
When: Seasonal, check website
Situated in the shadow of Edinburgh Castle on the Royal Mile, this is the place where you truly experience Whisky.
Discover the origins of whisky, learn how whisky is made and take a barrel ride (yes, an actual ride) through the making process. A 180 degree cinema experience will take you through each region of Scotland with scratch and sniff leaflets to learn your whisky smells. Browse the world’s largest collection of Scotch whiskies in the vault and marvel at the sheer variety of whisky in front of you. With over 3,000 unopened bottles of whisky as part of the visitor experience and over 450 bottles each to choose from in the bars, you will find your perfect choice here.
Tour Guide Tip: Go for the platinum package. It’s worth it.
The Connoisseur’s Choice: Whiski Rooms
Where: 4-7 N Bank Street
When: 10am- 1am everyday
The Whiski Rooms is a popular award-winning venue tucked away just off the Royal Mile on The Mound overlooking Princes Street.
Delicious food, whisky, beer, live music, a private dining area, daily tasting sessions and a shop with spectacular views – the Whiski Rooms has it all.
You can expect a cosy and subtle décor with exposed stone and an authentic Scottish theme throughout. This is a whisky connoisseur’s dream. With over 300 whiskies and various flights to choose from, the staff will ensure you find the right dram.
Each option on the food menu is matched with a suggested complimentary whisky. Haggis is a speciality here in various shapes and forms including haggis spring rolls. A Scottish take on an oriental dish – don’t knock it until you’ve tried it!
Tour Guide Tip: Try a whisky tasting event – cheese or chocolate, what is there not to like?
The Instagram Choice: Devil’s Advocate
Where: 9 Advocate’s Close, Edinburgh EH1 1ND
When: 12:00 – 01:00 every day
The Devil’s Advocate is a popular and snug bar and restaurant tucked away down a cobbled alley in the heart of the Royal Mile in the Old Town. This bar made it on the shortlist of Imbibe’s Whisky Shortlist Drinks List of the Year in 2018 and was featured with some of the best bars across the UK, so you know we have found a gem here for you.
This bar really has it all. It’s cosy, bustling and friendly with an intimate, candle-lit restaurant upstairs specialising in traditional local cuisine with a medieval feel and a lively bar downstairs. There is an outside seating area where you can watch the world go by (weather permitting). It is famed for its vast array of whiskies, delicious food and whisky based cocktails.
The popular food menu is surpassed by their whisky menu, with over 400 whiskies to choose from. Try a whisky and cheese flight from different regions of Scotland.
Tour Guide Tip: This venue is set in a historic Victorian pump house.
The Tourist’s Choice: Ensign Ewart
Where: 521-523 Lawnmarket, Edinburgh EH1 2PE
When: 11:00 – 23:00 Sunday – Thursday (1am Friday and Saturday)
The Ensign Ewart is the nearest pub to Edinburgh Castle.
This cosy pub dates back to 1690 and offers everything a tourist would look for and enjoy. This is the closest pub to Edinburgh Castle and the highest pub in Edinburgh. You will find live folk music here most nights, good locally sourced pub food, real ales and a vast selection of whiskies.
The Ensign Ewart is named after Charles Ewart, who, single-handedly captured the standard of the famous French Invincibles at the Battle of Waterloo. You are likely to find a bagpiper here enjoying a drink after playing nearby at the Castle each night.
Tour Guide Tip: Ask for the malt of the month.
The Locals Choice: Bow Bar
Where: 80 West Bow, Edinburgh EH1 2HH
When: 12:00 – 00:00 Monday – Saturday (12.30pm – 11:30 Sunday)
The Bow Bar is an award-winning hidden gem in the Old Town just a stone’s throw from the Royal Mile and Grassmarket. It is rated as one of the best pubs in Edinburgh by locals.
Established in 1987, it has quickly become the go-to pub for whisky and real ale enthusiasts in Edinburgh. This quaint pub is a real haven for the connoisseur.
With over 400 whiskies to choose from, you are sure to find one to suit your palate.
You can expect a galley-style bar, a fire, wooden benches and small chairs surrounded by ornate mirrors.
With a range of well-kept real ales, a wide selection of whiskies and an unusual selection of hot pies with unique combinations such as pork and blue cheese and Moroccan lamb
Tour Guide Tip: Try and match a pie with a whisky – you’re sure to find some interesting combinations.
The Members Choice: The Scotch Malt Whisky Society
The Scotch Malt Whisky Society
Where: 28 Queen Street, Edinburgh EH2 1JX
When: 11:00 – 23:00 Monday – Wednesday, 11:00 – 00:00 Friday – Saturday, 12:00 – 22:00 Sunday
The Scotch Malt Whisky Society is set in a sophisticated Georgian townhouse over 4 floors in the heart of the New Town. This venue won the title of Restaurant of The Year in the Hospitality Awards for 2017 – 2018, so you know we have found something special for you here.
The Kaleidoscope Whisky Bar and Restaurant is open to everyone with member’s venues situated on the upper floors. You can expect window settings offering spectacular views over the Firth of Forth, sumptuous leather sofas, chandeliers and elegant surroundings. The society bottle all the casks they own here, which sets it apart from any other whisky experience.
With over 200 rare malt whiskies to choose from, you are spoilt for choice here.
There is a shop where you can purchase gifts, whisky and memorabilia to remind you of what will be a memorable visit.
Tour Guide Tip: Try a sample maiden voyage whisky flight.