My favourite places to eat 2018 by Mary Woodward

Eating and drinking

My favourite places to eat 2018 by Mary Woodward

Our revered editor gave some of his recommendations at the start of the Fringe, so I’m joining in with my Picks of the Year…

Top of the list has to be the Old School Cafe [Facebook – Old School Cafe]. It was set up a few years ago as part of the Canongate Youth Project, and aims to give young people the opportunity to gain practical skills which they could then use in the workplace – and, incidentally, offer an oasis of calm in the busyness of the city in which you can consume excellent coffee, superb tea, and a wide variety of exceedingly tasty meals at incredibly reasonable prices. I keep meaning to check out items on the wide-ranging menu [vegetarian chilli, homemade Thai red curry, and a plethora of toasties, wraps and paninis] but continually find myself weakening and going for my all-time favourite – their BLT, with a cup of their own special blend coffee to follow. Last week, however, I did branch out and have the toasted bagel with cream cheese and smoked salmon, and followed that later in the day with a pot of tea and a superb flapjack. Just for the Fringe they are open Monday- Friday between 09.00 and 17.00, outwith that, they shut at 15.00. Find them at the South Bridge Centre on Infirmary Street, currently in its other manifestation as venue 236.

Another quiet place which caters exclusively for vegans and vegetarians is the cafe which pops up in the Quaker Meeting House [Website – venue 40] for the three weeks of the Fringe and then disappears into the wide blue yonder for another year. Their main offering is an excellent ‘one-pot wonder’, the contents of which vary each day but are very filling and good value for money. For those with a sweet tooth and a weak will, their selection of cakes and suchlike has to be seen to be believed…

And then there is the Mosque Kitchen [Website – Mosque Kitchen]on Nicholson Square, which serves cheap, cheerful and good curry of all kinds – no frills, just good food: and for those who don’t have the time to sit down or the patience to queue, there’s a takeaway bit at the side, where I had a pretty decent falafel wrap last week.

And finally, Yocoko [Facebook] on the South Bridge – just opposite Chambers Street and before you get to Infirmary Street – does noodles and rice and all things nice and a particularly filling and cheap bowl of soup which can have chicken or tofu or other stuff added to wonderfully fresh and crunchy veg in a thoroughly excellent chicken stock – and if you can’t decide which to have, you can have the Yocoko special which has a bit of everything in it. Again, it’s cheap, no-frills, and just plain good!

Mary Woodward