It's a quiet corner on a quiet street in the center of the quiet neighborhood of Marchmont. But inside the Earl of Marchmont, one can find the friendly commotion that's given it such a great rep since opening its doors just last year. Billy, who owns the joint (with his wife) along with Renroc and Cafe Nevo, said that the most drama he has seen on that corner involved his neighbour's window across the street, some naughty school kids, and probably a dozen eggs.
It's a simple enough bar but it has a special cosiness that's hippishly inviting but entirely unpretentious. Eyes are most certainly drawn to the jewelled chandelier that hangs above a den of black leather couches with zebra print-covered cushions. A massive gold-framed mirror hangs next to the bar window where I decide to situate myself and sit a spell. Pairs of good-looking people have already gotten comfortable and on this Monday January eve, there is a definite feeling that several conversations of the night began like this: Let's go have a quiet pint.
I arrived with only a laptop and a bit of work as my date for the evening and this was a great place for this kind of thing too. I settled into my workload with a pint of lager and ordered nachos from the menu, altho the choices were ripe with the likes of beef and veg lasagne (£4.95), lamb hot-pot (£4.95), steak and ale casserole (£4.95) and chicken curry with rice (£4.95). My nachos (£4.95) were a perfect portion of the perfect bar snack: tortillas with melted cheese, cool soured cream, hot salsa and refreshing guacamole.
Desserts that tempted were stick chocolate and pear pudding and stuffed baked apple pudding (desserts from £2.95) but I was able to resist for the sake of not completely blowing all of my New Year's resolutions!
By the time I resolve to go home, I can't. The buzz of the bar (not the beer, mind!) gets me stuck in for another half pint as the locals point out all of the reasons that make this corner of Edinburgh a great one. I'm informed that there's jazz on Sundays so with that in mind, I bid goodbye until a quiet Sunday leads me back for another spell.
Open M-W 1pm-12amThurs-Sat 1pm-1amSun 1pm-11am
22 Marchmont Crescent, Edinburgh, EH9
Also in March 2009 issue of Bite Magazine