Sunday 30 December 2012

Edinburgh pub: The Last Drop

Since leaving Edinburgh, E and I always find return visits busy catching up with people and visiting some of our favourite places.  No wonder the days fly by.  One of my favourite pubs when I lived in Edinburgh was the Last Drop in the Grassmarket. 

We went to the Grassmarket via Candlemaker Row.  At the top of this street is the statue of Greyfriars Bobby - the loyal wee dog who was buried in the graveyard of Greyfriar's Kirk.

His grave is quite humble but some of the other graves are more elaborate.  I am always amazed at now close the graves are to the houses.

At the bottom of Candlemaker Row is my favourite view of the castle.  If you look closely you will see a splash of red in the bottom left of the picture.  That is the front of the Last Drop.

It is a traditional pub with a welcoming bar and lots of nooks and crannies.  When I lived in Edinburgh I would often take visitors there.  Now I love it even more because it is one of the pubs that welcomes Sylvia.  Quite a few pubs would not let us bring her in or would only let us into the restaurant but not the bar.

Checking the url from our visit in 2009, it seems that the pub is now under new management.  It is run by Nicolson's pubs (the same chain as the Kenilworth).  The decor and menu seem mostly unchanged (though I think they might be different from when we lived in Edinburgh.)

The Last Drop can also be relied upon for warming drinks.  E had mulled wine and I had the hot port with honey.  I enjoyed my hot port but I think I would prefer a mulled wine which is less sweet.  There is also a drink called the Pooh Bear which is warm milk and honey.  It sounds great for young kids if they like such drinks.

Sylvia is more into sweet drinks than milk drinks.  It was at the Last Drop that we introduced her to Irn Bru, "Scotland's other national drink".  Irn Bru, like Coke, is less sweet than a lot of soft drinks and contains caffeine.  It is reputedly more popular than coca cola in Scotland.  Needless to say, Sylvia loved the stuff.

I was very pleased to be able to order the nachos with vegetarian haggis.  It was in the Last Drop on our last visit that I discovered this dish.  I loved it so much that I have made it at home quite a few times since then.  Here is a better photo of the nachos than the one I took in 2009.  It is a very satisfying way to eat haggis.  (After all it is quite like minced meat.)

E chose the traditional haggis neeps and tatties.  He loves eating lots of haggis when visiting Edinburgh.  (It is quite hard to find in Melbourne when eating out.)  The haggis in The Last Drop was so pleasing that he measured haggis at every other cafe or pub against it.  Very few were as good.

After lunch, we wandered down the Grassmarket, showed Sylvia where we used to live on the West Port and spent quite a bit of time in Helios Fountain.  It was a faovurite place for Sylvia because it has so many of the little and tiny things that she loves.

We had a look in at Avalanche records store which has moved from Cockburn Street to the Grassmarket, and we were interested to see that the pub on the corner of the West Port had changed from a modern Scottish (Bar Alba) to more traditional style (The Fiddler's Arms).  While shops and bars come and go, the Grassmarket remains a place I love to visit for both history and nostalgia.

The Last Drop
74-78 Grassmarket
Edinburgh, EH1 2JR

Tel: 0131 225 4851
Our last visit in 2009

Update 2016: On our visit to Edinburgh this year I found that the Last Drop don't have vegetarian haggis nachos on their menu at the moment.  So sad!  


  1. I remember the Last Drop and the Greyfriars Bobby Memorial from one of those double decker tourist bus trips - sadly, we didn't stop, we just drove past. Happy New Year!

  2. Isn't it lovely when things change, but stay the same at heart? It sounds like this would be a great place for visiting again and again.


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