OG Post: October 12th, 2015.
Inspired by Kevin's journaling of his trip I decided to write up a bit of one myself.
I got off the plane, picked up my bag and to the taxi with no issue. It was a long flight but a good one. I had the taxi stop by my office to pick up the key to the apartment, and then on to Queen Street. Along the way I found out a bit about local politics and helpful information from the cabby. Also, why they call the area I'm staying in New Town. It's because the buildings here are only about 250 years old. Newer than Old Town at least.
After struggling with the door I finally got into the apartment and it is definitely one of the nicest places I've ever stayed at. Once I got a little unpacked and settled I decided to quest for coffee. I found this great little place called Eteakat that served tea, and coffee. They even had gluten free sandwiches. It was delicious, from there I had energy and a desire to explore so I walked, and walked and walked. Pretty much all the New Town area and in and part of Old Town too.
I found my way back to the apartment in time to get changed and head back out for dinner and drinks. I found a place called Bramble. Some of the websites marked it as one of the top 50 bars in the world. Trip Advisor said no trip to Edinburgh is complete with out it so I started there. It was a couple of blocks from the street I was on so I began walking and looking for the sign. After about 4 blocks I was convinced I missed it but not in vein. I stumbled upon the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. It was closed but on Thursday's they are open until 7:00PM. I know what I'll be doing Thursday night.
After turning around I saw a group of women getting out of a cab at Queen and Hanover. They headed though a gate by the dry cleaners, and down a set of stairs. This was where google said the bar would be so I asked and they said it was Bramble. No sign, just a unassuming staircase to a underground door below the cleaners. I followed them in and it was a very small bar. Lit mostly by candle light and with direct down spotlights over the bar area. There were several nooks and crannies for people to post up in. Although overall it was smaller than my apartment. I took a seat next to the giant Electric Ladyland poster and listened as they jammed old school Wu-Tang, NWA, and Snoop Dogg. The cocktail list was long and I wanted everything on the menu. However, I only sampled "The Bramble" and a "Spectrum Stadium". Hands down the best cocktails I've ever had. I'm sure I will be back.
After that I was feeling a bit peckish so I headed to another restaurant / bar around the corner called Soba. A Pan-Asian place with a live DJ spinning funky rock tunes and doing an excellent job at it. I found out this place has a few other locations in Glasgow and Leeds and I could see why. I had the Wok Chilli Chicken with Basil and Cashews and it was delicious. I washed it down with the Nuclear Daiquiri. That cocktail had a limit of only two per customer. I could see why so I didn't go back for seconds. It was close to 10pm at that point so I decided to go back to the apartment and get some sleep. In bed by 10, I was proud of myself for having adjusted to the time difference so quickly.
Day 2 will come tomorrow. It's bed time here.