Real Ale * Wine Selection * Restaurant Bar Food * Town/City Pubs
About the Pub
Although no longer privately owned and now under the direct control of Scottish & Newcastle, this remains one of the finest pubs on the planet. They have two cask ales and in excess of a hundred malt whiskies. The beer has changed from earlier times, but is still very fairly priced and the decor of this magnificent Victorian bar has remained intact - the entire bar is listed. The fine exterior which features superb leaded glass is matched inside with a veritable cornucopia of architectural delights (and I am writing this sober). The lovely long bar with its original tiered and alcoved gantry housing the whisky collection, has a wee snug bar at the end beside the door, separated by a wooden and leaded glass panel. This was a common feature in Scottish bars where women, or men who didn't want to seen, could be served in some privacy. The bar retains original working brass water taps and on the gantry is a brass gas cigarette lighter that used to be fitted beside the snug. Opposite the bar there is a series of mirrors surrounded by decorated tiles and carved wooden pillars behind fitted seats. The small tables are replacements of earlier ones with glass covered maps on their tops. Food is available from 12pm - 3pm and 5pm - 8pm featuring pies and roast meats, chicken and pasta at reasonable prices. Bennet's attracts a totally mixed crowd of suits and students, shoppers and scribes, male and female and a regular influx at intervals from the King's Theatre next door. Through the back is another bar named the Green Room, and the corridor through to it has an interesting recent mural. The amenities are fine with a step up to the ladies. Wonderful timeless atmosphere.
Stuart McHardy - Edinburgh and Leith Pub Guide - 2000