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Where to eat haggis in Edinburgh?

sasicka Apr 20, 2012 05:14 AM

My friends are going to Edinbourgh for a few days and they asked me about Scotch food. Where should they go for eating the best haggis? Prefer gastropubs over fine dining.

Thanks so much!

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  1. h
    Harters RE: sasicka Apr 20, 2012 06:02 AM

    Scotch is whisky. Scottish describes food (and anything else). And you have a typo in your title - the city is Edinburgh.

    Unless you get a specific mention of a place that makes their own, then I'd suggest your friends look out for anywhere selling MacSween's haggis which is, IMO, the best of the commonly available ones. I'd reckon most pubs will buy in their haggis, rather than make their own. That said, I don't think I've ever had a poor haggis anywhere in Scotland, although some are less peppery than others.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Harters
      meltsheep RE: Harters Jun 14, 2012 07:10 AM

      The title is correct. It says Edinburg.

      When did Macsween win the a haggis championship award? Certainly not recently. Just because its available the length of breadth of the company doesn't mean its good.

      And here's the OED definition of "scotch"


      old-fashioned term for Scottish. a Scotch plaid scarf


      1short for Scotch whisky. a bottle of Scotch

      2 (as plural noun the Scotch) dated the people of Scotland.

      3 [mass noun] dated the form of English spoken in Scotland.

      1. re: meltsheep
        Harters RE: meltsheep Jun 14, 2012 07:54 AM

        Thanks, I always appreciate it when folks take the trouble to tell me when I'm wrong.

        Can't help on when MacSween won a championship. Absolutely no idea - or even if they ever have.

        1. re: Harters
          meltsheep RE: Harters Jun 14, 2012 07:58 AM

          lol well they are a great brand like Macdonalds :-) I come from edinburgh.

          BTW all or most of the fish 'n chip shoaps in edinburgh sell "haggis suppers". Problem solved. eat it with "sauce" (edinburgh's special watered down HP sauce).

    2. Naguere RE: sasicka Apr 20, 2012 06:21 AM

      Harters has it in one.

      There are no Souse Chefs turning out haggises:) in Edunbourgh, or for that matter
      Edinburgh. they are a product.

      But if ever you come to Scarborough in the NE of England, you can have the

      best Cod and Chips in the world.

      (said with tongue in cheek mods)

      1 Reply
      1. re: Naguere
        Harters RE: Naguere Apr 20, 2012 03:29 PM

        Coming from the north west, it grieves me to accept that Yorkshire does seem to produce the country's finest fish & chips.

      2. r
        r.vacapinta RE: sasicka Apr 20, 2012 10:33 AM

        There's a gastro-pub called The Dogs on Hanover street that serves Haggis (along with Neeps and Tatties) and is quite good. I ate there a couple weeks ago when I was in Edinburgh. It is a lively place with mis-matched tables. It is listed in the Good Food Guide.

        Make sure you walk upstairs to get to it. They have a ground floor restaurant (Amore Dogs?) which is to be avoided.

        1. sasicka RE: sasicka Apr 20, 2012 11:02 PM

          Thanks very much, guys, and my appologies for the mistakes. Scottish and Edinburgh :-)

          1. sunshine842 RE: sasicka Apr 21, 2012 12:37 AM

            the last time I visited that fair city, it seemed that every eatery in Edinburgh offered up haggis -- up to and including a vegetarian version (although I confess to having no idea how THAT works!)

            A waitress in the small resto where we had dinner was kind enough to bring a small plate to try, since neither of us was certain we really wanted to have an entire order as dinner....It was far better than I was afraid it would be, and we finished the small offering (adding to the tip for the kindness), although I'm not sure I'd request it again.

            3 Replies
            1. re: sunshine842
              Harters RE: sunshine842 Apr 21, 2012 01:43 AM

              I've had veggie haggis (MacSween's) and it's not bad. Not the real thing, of course, but not bad. Uses beans and lentils in place of the meat but seasonings, etc are the same I think.


              The real heresy though, is the vegetarian black pudding made by one of the companies in Bury. It grieves me considerably to tell you that this, also, isnt bad.

              1. re: Harters
                sunshine842 RE: Harters Apr 21, 2012 09:10 AM

                but considering the number of times I've tried black pudding, and the number of different locations (England, Scotland, Ireland, Germany and France) in which I've tried it -- and not cared for it, ever -- sadly, vegetarian black pudding actually is a viable option for me....

                I don't detest the stuff, and would eat it if it appeared on the plate at the home of a friend, but it's not something I make the conscious choice to consume any more.

                1. re: sunshine842
                  sasicka RE: sunshine842 Apr 21, 2012 09:25 AM

                  Yum yum black pudding in Austria yum... Still salivating :-)
                  Thanks guys for all the info. My friends actually want to try haggis :-D

            2. a
              AWaiting RE: sasicka Apr 23, 2012 05:09 AM

              Funnily enough, due to the fact that most places will buy it in and that lots of them therefore buy MacSween's then it's a dish that is served well in most establishments (as it should be as it's so blinking simple to pull together!). If they're staying in a decent hotel then they should be able to sample some with breakfast as well!

              I probably wouldn't recommend going out of the way for the dogs, not because it's bad, it's just that they change menu regularly so it may not be on. All pubs on the Royal Mile are bound to have it on.

              In my opinion, Vegie Haggis is one of the few "vegie alternatives" that is worth ordering even if you're a meat lover. It is totally different in style but has a wonderful unctuous quality that meat haggis can lack.

              5 Replies
              1. re: AWaiting
                Harters RE: AWaiting Apr 23, 2012 05:54 AM

                Last year, when we toured round for 10 days, I think haggis was on the breakfast menu every day (even the small B & Bs)

                1. re: Harters
                  orchidalbion RE: Harters Apr 24, 2012 03:10 AM

                  go to a decent breakfast establishment and you normally get stornaway black pudding as part of your breakfast as well - urban angel on hanover street does them both, pricey but the bacon and sausages are free range and you get the ability to mix and match your breakfast items, tattie scones and arbroath smokies are available - to throw a couple of other Scottish food items in, and I love veggie haggis as well. Meat Haggis is great, good for breakfast, sandwiches etc but i find it a bit too rich on its own for a midweek dinner, which is when veggie haggis comes in.

                  1. re: orchidalbion
                    marcus james RE: orchidalbion May 11, 2012 12:11 PM

                    this thread is actually raising a really valid question that, as yet, continues to go unanswered. where, in edinburgh, is there a venue serving homemade haggis, elevated to a level beyond macsween, or any good artisan producer in a hospitable environment?

                    1. re: marcus james
                      AWaiting RE: marcus james May 11, 2012 12:43 PM

                      Marcus, that's a very valid question! I've lived in Edinburgh for 17yrs and still could not tell you the answer. It must be the hassle of getting all the component parts and making it and when they know MacSween is good as a standard. I'll update if I ever find out!

                      1. re: AWaiting
                        bodessa RE: AWaiting May 14, 2012 03:43 AM

                        Has anyone tried a Crombies haggis? As their sausages are so good, the haggis can't be too bad either.... they supply the Halfway House, but surely they must do so for other (more spacious!) places in the city.

              2. g
                GreenDragon RE: sasicka Jun 7, 2012 09:59 AM

                We had fantastic haggis at the Haggis Cafe, right next to Edinburgh Castle, believe it or not. Yes, most B&Bs offered it for breakfast, and it was usually great (one was dry). The Cafe offered a brunch, and it was the first time most of the people in our group of 6 had tried it. It was creamy, spicy, and tasty - served on melba toast.

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