Edinburgh's Christmas Treats

Let's be real as magical as Christmas is, winter is the time where we're all freezing our butts off. To help keep warm (especially since I have a broken boiler and have done for the whole of autumn/winter so far!) I like to add on an extra layer of fat by eating everything in sight! But seriously, Christmas time is when some of my favourite food comes out and I just don't feel guilty indulging. So here's my low-down on my favourite festive treats to feast on this Christmas time in the Capital!

Edinburgh's Christmas Market:

(Bratwurst and Nutella Crepe)

The German market is my all time favourite place to head this time of year and had to be top of the list. Working on Princes Street I am dangerously close to the market and the smell of bratwurst lures me in far too often. While there are the classic favourites I indulge in every year including the bratwurst (mmm with onions and that curry ketchup), pretzels (how do these taste SO much better than pretzels from bakeries?) and Nutella crepes (absolute classic), I've also discovered a few new (at least to me) stalls this year.

(Cheeky Raclette)

RACLETTE! It's French cheese that they melt then slide off the wheel right onto your French sausage. I don't know if I need to elaborate further on this other than to tell you the exact location of this stall (go in the entrance closest to the Scottish National Gallery, walk in a wee bit, turn to your left, pass the pretzels... by this point you should be able to smell it – I mean spot it).

(Nutella and Raspberry Cupcake, Nutella Hot Chocolate both from Mimi's Cake Cabin)

Mimi's have set up their very own Cake Cabin in the heart of the main market in Princes Street Gardens. It's so nice having a little bit of one of Edinburgh's best bakery in amongst all the essential German stalls. I've been to the cabin a few times and there's always something different and usually with a festive twist. There's tray bakes, brownies and cupcakes – there's even mince pie flavoured treats! They also do an array of extreme hot beverages from Nutella hot chocolates to peppermint mochas. I even saw a candy floss hot chocolate on the menu – watch out on my Instagram because I'm definitely heading back there soon to try that!

And don't forget to grab a little mulled something. My favourite market drinks are the Gin Apple Toddy and the Bailey's hot chocolates!

Festive sarnies:

I am not a sandwich person and I very rarely grab a packaged sandwich unless I'm in a total hurry – except during the festive season that is. While nothing comes close to my homemade boxing day leftovers sandwich, I live for a Christmas dinner sandwich. My top favourites, as they are every year, are the Marks and Spencer's (pigs in blanket with your turkey dinner!) and Pret-A-Manger sandwiches (but hey the Sainsbo's one ain't bad either). Alongside the classic festive sandwich, I've discovered a couple new lunch-time favourites. M&S has an insane turkey and cranberry 'sausage' roll that works amazingly with a tomato soup for a hearty lunch. I also can't resist a cheeky little festive bake from Greggs when I'm feeling a little worse for wear after a night of mulled wine.

Festive Pop-ups:

(Chilli Chocolate Fondue at Comet and Blitzen launch night)

A few weeks back I was invited to a festive pop-up bar's opening in Stockbridge. Comet and Blitzen offers a festive retreat where you can indulge in winter cocktails and fondue. Their opening night they sadly did not have any of the cocktails available to sample as the ingredients hadn't arrived and they'd only got the keys to the place that morning! However, we did get a taste of the menu and I'm definitely planning on heading back as the menu featured not only a chocolate fondue, but a cheese fondue... with pigs in blankets to dip. In case you haven't noticed by now I love cheese, like really love cheese...

Christmas menus:

(Turkey dinner at All Bar One)

I love a Christmas set menu, to the point where I will make sure I get in a few meals with all my friends groups as well as work. This year my work booked All Bar One, and I have to admit I wasn't that excited about the meal mainly because we're a big team and last year our meal didn't go so well (cold steaks, missing food, etc...). However, I was pleasantly surprised and the meal was really good! I had instant food envy though of the gals and guys that ordered steak as it was so good (shout-out to Annie for letting me try her's) but I was too scared of a repeat from last year's cold steak. A set menu is the perfect way to gather a group of your closest pals, work colleagues or family together during the holidays. Plus it means you're guaranteed another Christmas dinner on top of the one you'll have on the actual day. I have another meal booked with some friends at Cote Brasserie next week, so keep your eyes on my Instagram to see how that one goes!

Festive twists:

(Festive Afternoon Tea at the Howard Hotel)

What I love this time of year is when your old school favourites get a wee festive twist. I was recently at the Howard Hotel for my cousin's baby shower and their normal afternoon tea had had a bit of a festive makeover. Alongside the classic scones and savouries, our cake stands were adorned with turkey and cranberry sandwiches, mince pies and pigs in blankets. Most of your favourite afternoon tea spots will change up their usual selection to fit in with the Christmas theme. You can indulge in a little foie gras and chestnut sausage roll with a christmas pudding at the Balmoral or grab a sage and onion scone with turkey and cranberry filling from Cup Tea Rooms.

So that was just a quick low-down of all my must-hit spots for festive treats this Christmas in Edinburgh, but I would love to hear any of your suggestions. Let me know in the comments or on my Instagram – I'm always up for trying new places!


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