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From the outside this historic waterfront boozer in Leith (circa 1432) looks pretty run of the mill, yet it’s a top shout locally, with a reputation as one of Edinburgh’s premier gastropubs. With
its stone walls, low beamed ceilings and ancient wooden floors, the place feels much as it would have done hundreds of years ago, but the secret of its success isn’t ‘ye olde’ ambience (or even the
tiny little bar), but the cooking. The kitchen delivers huge servings of terrific, sensibly priced food with bags of innovation and a fondness for lesser-known cuts – perhaps seared pigeon breast
with roast beetroot, spiced pickled onions and maple-cured pancetta or confit duck with chorizo, bean cassoulet and aïoli. There’s some fine seafood too (try monkfish cheeks and crevettes in
bouillabaisse broth), while the enormous specials board offers even more possibilities.
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