Festive Menus in Edinburgh For 2023

By Ellie Smith

6 months ago

Christmas feasts in the Scottish capital


Edinburgh is particularly beautiful come Christmas time, with festive markets and twinkling lights popping up all over the city. Lots of restaurants get involved with the celebrations too, introducing seasonal menus – perfect for groups of friends or families looking for somewhere to enjoy a special meal together. Here we highlight the best festive menus in Edinburgh, from grand hotels to cosy pubs and buzzy cocktail bars.

Festive Menus in Edinburgh For 2023

  • The Spence at Gleneagles Townhouse
  • Lady Libertine
  • Number One at The Balmoral
  • Twenty Princes Street
  • Duck & Waffle
  • Contini
  • Copper Blossom
  • The Witchery
  • The Raeburn
  • The Dome

The Spence at Gleneagles Townhouse

Spence at Gleneagles Townhouse

Housed in a former banking hall within the grand Gleneagles Townhouse, The Spence is a fitting spot for special occasions. Think beautiful interiors filled with pastel pink velvets and gilded lamps, alongside an impressive menu from young head chef Jonny Wright, made using local produce from across Scotland. The festive offering includes seasonal starters of wild game terrine and heritage beetroot ahead of mains such as roast chicken with all the trimmings, venison loin, and pumpkin gnocchi. Finish with a Baileys choux bun or a cherry and pistachio parfait, and be sure to check out the cocktail menu, which features tipples like The Engineer, made with Tanqueray gin, yuzu sake and creme de cacao.

Price: £85pp

Address: 39 St Andrew Square, Edinburgh EH2 2AD

BOOK: gleneagles.com

Lady Libertine

Food at Lady Libertine

This buzzy spot is spread across two floors, with a subterranean bar kicking things up a notch on weekends with music from DJs. But if you’re after a festive meal with friends, book a table on the ground floor restaurant to enjoy Mediterranean twists on Christmas classics. Tuck into a sharing-style menu: starters of panko feta balls and chicken koftas ahead of larger plates of barbecued aubergine and roast cod, followed by a choice of chocolate ganache tart or pistachio meringue. 

Price: 2 courses for £20 or 3 courses for £36

Address: 25 W Register St, Edinburgh EH2 2AA

BOOK: ladylibertine.co.uk

The Balmoral

The Balmoral

The Balmoral has been around for over a century – yet it still remains one of Edinburgh’s top hotels. It’s a particularly magical place to visit during the festive season, particularly since the arrival of the new private dining room at fine dining restaurant Number One. Book it out with a group of friends this season and you can choose between three, five or seven-course menus, featuring dishes like Shetland salmon, hand dived scallops, North Sea halibut, and Goosnargh duck. Why not book a night’s stay too for the ultimate treat?

Price: £95pp

Address: 1 Princes St, Edinburgh EH2 2EQ

BOOK: roccofortehotels.com

Twenty Princes Street

This stylish spot found within Hotel Indigo in the middle of town is always buzzing, set in a grand Victorian building. Head there this Christmas to enjoy a festive three-course meal with friends, available from 20 November and throughout December. The menu features an array of seasonal dishes, beginning with starters of cured salmon with gin compressed cucumber, spiced squash soup, and roasted wild mushrooms with hazelnuts and artichoke crisps. For mains, there’s a classic turkey roast, a root vegetable pie or pan fried cod, followed by winter desserts of steamed ginger pudding, and Baked Alaska with chocolate sponge and sour cherry. 

Price: £45pp

Address: 20 Princes St, Edinburgh EH2 2AN

BOOK: twentyprincesstreet.co.uk

Duck & Waffle

Looking for somewhere to dine on Christmas Day? We’ve got just the ticket: the new Scottish branch of London favourite Duck & Waffle, located in Edinburgh’s St James Quarter. Visit to enjoy one of Edinburgh’s best festive menus, which begins with pigs in blankets and crispy oysters, ahead of starters of duck breast carpaccio and Isle of Mull scallop. For the main event, there’s a classic roast bronze turkey with all the trimmings, mushroom and truffle ragout, or roasted halibut with trout caviar. Be sure to make some space for the dessert: the sticky toffee waffle, drizzled in butterscotch caramel sauce, is the perfect celebratory finish (followed by mince pies, if you can manage). 

Price: £75pp or £40pp for children under 10

Address: St James Quarter, 400-402 St James Square, Edinburgh EH1 3AE

BOOK: duckandwaffle.com

Contini

 

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The New Town branch of Contini is a beautiful space, housed within a former banking hall inspired by Florentine palazzos. This season the restaurant is offering an Italian twist on classic festive dishes, ideal if you’re feeling a bit bored of the classic turkey roast. A three-course menu begins with primi dishes of saffron arancini, and buffalo mozzarella with roasted tomatoes, ahead of mains of pan roasted Scottish cod, roast pork with garlic brussel sprouts, and a leek and taleggio risotto. For dessert there’s a choice of three classic Italian puddings: tiramisu, panna cotta, or panettone with blood orange custard. At £45pp, it won’t break the bank either.

Price: £45pp

Address: 103 George St, Edinburgh EH2 3ES

BOOK: contini.com

Copper Blossom

Chic bar Copper Blossom is best known for its cocktails, but it also offers a great food menu. This festive season, diners can enjoy classic seasonal dishes with interesting twists, with a choice of either two-course or three-course menus. Starters include date and caramelised onion tart with whipped goat’s cheese, and oxtail ragu with crispy gnocchi and parmesan shavings. Next up: a turkey roast served with beef dripping roasties, honey glazed carrots, pigs in blankets and more, or roasted butternut squash with lentils and orange maple Brussel sprouts. End on a sweet note with a hazelnut chocolate pot, a traditional Christmas pud or an Earl Grey crème brulée. There’s an extensive menu of cocktails to choose from, including some fun sharers served in a smoking chest, with instructions on how to make the tipples at your table.

Price: From £23.95pp for two courses

Address: 107 George St, Edinburgh EH2 3BG

BOOK: copperblossom.com

The Witchery by the Castle – Edinburgh

The Witchery

Gothic opulence at its finest, The Witchery is a boutique hotel and restaurant on the Royal Mile, set just steps away from the world-famous Edinburgh Castle. With its red leather seats, oak panelling and candlelit tables, a trip here always has a sense of occasion, making it the perfect spot for a Christmas feast. Food is suitably luxurious, with this year’s festive menu kicking off with caviar ahead of starters of Islay oysters and Scotch beef tartare. Mains are all about showing off the best of Scottish produce: there’s roe deer and haggis wellington, barbecued North Sea monkfish, and a seasonal mushroom tart with pickled walnuts and grilled goat’s cheese. For pudding, keep it classic with a traditional yule log, or a Christmas pudding sundae served with whisky ice cream. Afterwards, why not treat yourself to a stay in one of the sumptuous bedrooms?

Price: Mains from £26

Address: 352 Castlehill, Edinburgh EH1 2NF

BOOK: thewitchery.com

The Raeburn

 

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For cosy pub vibes, book a table at The Raeburn, a boutique hotel and eatery set in a Georgian mansion in New Town. It’s renowned for serving top-quality food amid relaxed settings, focused around locally sourced ingredients – with a festive three-course feast on offer throughout December. Choose from dishes like parsnip and apple soup, and beetroot carpaccio, ahead of a turkey roast, slow-cooked ox cheek, or a butternut squash and lemon ricotta filo parcel. On the sweet side, choose from treacle pudding, dark chocolate torte, trifle or a selection of Scottish cheeses. If you visit from a Monday to Wednesday, you can enjoy two courses for just £29, complete with a complimentary glass of fizz.

Price: £37pp for 3 courses

Address: 112 Raeburn Pl, Edinburgh EH4 1HG

BOOK: theraeburn.com

The Dome

 

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Historic venue The Dome is a sight to behold year-round, but it really comes alive come Christmas time, when its exterior is given a festive makeover with foliage and baubles aplenty. There are various dining and drinking options inside, but for festive dining your best bet is The Grill, a brasserie-style restaurant. A few different menus are on offer throughout the season, including a set menu from the end of November until 24 December. Diners can enjoy a traditional festive feast of dishes like roasted parsnip soup, smoked salmon roulade, and roast turkey, followed by a chocolate and orange tart, apple crumble cheesecake of Christmas pudding with warm brandy custard. Certainly one of the best festive menus in Edinburgh.

Price: £52pp for 2 courses

Address: 14 George St, Edinburgh EH2 2PF

BOOK: thedomeedinburgh.com