Now you know me, I love my food. So I was delighted to be invited along to The Blackbird on Leven Street, Edinburgh, a few weeks ago to sample their new summer food and drink menu. I had been to The Blackbird once before with Gillian and Laura for some #Burgerlovingbabes time, but was excited to go back and see how things have changed.
The bar was really busy when we first went in, which surprised us for 6.30pm on a Tuesday night. Every table was full and there were lots of people standing having drinks at the bar too. The Blackbird is beautifully decorated with bare Edison bulbs, stone walls, lots of mirrors and vintage guild frames and has a really cool, but comfy and cozy vibe.
We were shown to our table and left to peruse the menus. The drinks menu is extensive, with lots of cocktails split into different categories, plus the new selection of seven summer cocktails. There was just so much to choose from and everything sounded amazing, which made things reeeeee-ally difficult, but who's complaining? The Blackbird is also in the same family as Treacle, so I was expecting big and tasty things from the cocktails. We both eventually went with cocktails from the recent seasonal menu which all had amazing names! Robin chose the Neo Tiki Punch, with mango, pineapple and rum and I decided on The Girl with the Dragon Yuzu with gin, lemon and dragon fruit cordial. Both arrived with fun striped straws which I love and Robin's had an extra little cocktail umbrella, which I quickly put behind his ear obvs. Robin's cocktail tasted like holiday in a glass, all pineapple and tiki loveliness and conjoured images of beaches and sea and the smell of sun tan lotion...get me on a plane now. My cocktail was so refreshing but with a fruity kick that it was hard to stop drinking it quickly.
Everything on the food menu also sounded amazing, from fish and chips to steak pie, so mouthwatering delicious that again, we had a hard time choosing. For starter I couldn't see past the haloumi, as I love it and it's always a treat, so we decided to share that with some breaded chicken. The haloumi came toasted with sumac, giving a nice lemony contrast of crispy to soft, accompanied with balsamic vinegar and some raspberries - a tasty combination of sweet and tangy. The crispy breaded chicken was also lovely and came with a tequilla, sour cream and lime dip, which was SO good! I love sour cream, so could have just sat and ate that straight from the pot.
For main meal, I went between a few different things before settling on the vegetarian burger, with feta, puy lentil and bean. I really shouldn't have kidded myself, I always go for the burger! They are just so dam tasty and this one was no exception. I love a broiche bun, the sweetness of the bun always works well with the savoury burger and I enjoyed the lovely creamy manchego cheese. I couldn't really taste the feta but the burger was still delicious. I also swapped the twice cooked chips for my favourites...sweet potato fries, which were just the right mix of crispy and soft. YUM!
Robin decided to try the crispy gressingham duck at the recommendation of the waitress. Robin is not a fan of beetroot and taking this on board the chef gave Robin a choice of quinoa instead, which he was so happy with. This change was made without a fuss and so we were very impressed at The Blackbird's flexibility with dietary requirements. There was also a note on the menu highlighting that gluten free alternatives for each meal could be provided, again which we were impressed with. Robin's meal was just delicious and the duck was cooked perfectly and was still lovely and tender, complimented by the crispy coating. The quinoa was mixed with a tasty blend of big chunks of roasted butternut squash, mandarin, lemon thyme and peanuts and was extremely flavorful.
Both meals were just delicious and we were so impressed with our choices.
Overall Robin and I had a great time at The Blackbird and we would be keen to go back for dinner another night, or brunch at the weekend. The atmosphere was just so warm, cozy and welcoming and I could see myself sitting for hours with pals over a few drinks, especially given how tasty the cocktails we had were. It would be good to go back and work our way through the whole list! The Blackbird also do live music nights on a Sunday, so it would be the perfect and chilled way to end the weekend, and have a beer garden which I am sure will be packed over the summer when the sun comes back out. The staff were really friendly and helpful too, even with our random no beetroot requests and the food really was delicious. Check it out, Edinburgh peeps!
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Have you been to The Blackbird or it's sister bars before?
**Disclaimer - I was invited to The Blacbirds in return for a review. Whilst our meal was complimentary, I was under no obligation to write a positive review and the post above reflects my true and honest opinion of my experience.