City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

The Antiquary

Average Rating:
Restaurant Photos
Photo of the Edinburgh restaurant
Restaurant profile
Edinburgh Area: 
Stockbridge, Edinburgh
Serving times: 
Wed: 6-9pm. Thurs-Fri: 12-9pm. Sat: 12-8pm. Sun: 11am-6pm.
(0131) 225 2858

Well-loved Stockbridge pub which features guest ales, occasional live music and excellent food service.

The Reviews


Fine Dining Comes to The Tic

Reviewed by Euan Andrews

Friday, May 3, 2013 - 4:42pm

Halfway along St Stephen St is the well-loved basement bar, The Antiquary, popular since time immemorial with local patrons, New Town students and late night revellers hoping for a drink after midnight. It’s never, beyond the occasional Sunday fry-up, had much to do in the way of food but that’s set to change with a new menu which splices pub grub favourites with near fine-dining levels of cooking and presentation.

We’re a party of four making the trip to The “Tic” to sample their new selection. Myself, my occasional glamorous assistant Harriet, plus William and Bristol John (a man who was allegedly propositioned by Jimi Hendrix in a pub, but that’s another story). It’s a quiet Thursday afternoon with the odd regular at the bar and our waitress service is consistently friendly yet unobtrusive.

Alongside the set menu, which is where pub-friendly fare such as burgers and fish finger sandwiches predominate, there are also daily specials which include meat and fish sourced from local Stockbridge fishmongers and butchers, all cooked to order by head chef James Dillon.

To start with, my mountainous portion of crispy whitebait is excellent, the perfect bar food to go with a pint of IPA, and home-made tartare sauce is the perfect accompaniment, as it is for Harriet’s fishcake. Bristol John (he’s met Jimi Hendrix, you know) is equally pleased with a smooth, thick caulilflower soup as is William with his pigeon breast in a red wine jus, the game meat perfectly pinkly flushed in the middle.

For her main, Harriet chooses a burger topped with stilton cheese with home-made chips. Admittedly a pub staple, but none the worse for that and as good as you’ll get anywhere else. The remaining three of us choose from the specials blackboard. Bristol (Jimi Hendrix) John’s venison casserole is a robust bowl of melting meat cooked in Arran Stout and my pork belly confit dish is a savoury extravaganza. Crisp yet fatty meat served with excellent potato fondant and sweet potato mash again in a red wine jus with only an unnecessary disc of black pudding to detract from a terrific plateful. For all that, William wins out most with his choice of skate wing with clams. A feast of seafood, it looks incredible as it’s brought up to our table and a far cry from what is traditionally expected in pub food which doesn’t come with the dreaded “gastro” prefix.

There are puds available, but we’re too stuffed with rich food and ale to continue further. The Antiquary could easily be overlooked foodwise in such a densely populated restaurant area, but it’s well worth checking out and prices of around a fiver for starters and £8-£12 for mains make it definite value for money.

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