The best Edinburgh Festival pop-up food options
5 of the best temporary food and pop-up dining hotspots at the 2013 Fringe
This article is from 2013.
Whatever else the Festival is, it’s not always glamorous. Bank a month’s worth of vintage sophistication at a cocktail and afternoon-tea fuelled swing-dance soirée in the breathtaking Mansfield Traquair. Dress-up is technically optional, but there’s a champagne-shaped prize for the swankiest lady and gent – so it’s not really.
Mansfield Traquair, 17 & 18 Aug, 5–8pm, £35 (includes afternoon tea and welcome cocktail)
Having said the above, the Signet Library’s annual champagne bar is the second of three undeniably luxe entries. It’s a rare chance to see one of Edinburgh’s hidden architectural jewels, while doing what King George IV couldn’t on his visit: tucking into afternoon tea, or a whole roast lobster. A tutored champagne tasting also takes place on 15 Aug (£50).
The Signet Library, 2–26 Aug, 11am–late
Last year nearly 3000 people tried to buy tickets for the posh version of this once-regular Edinburgh ‘guerrilla dining’ event. One hundred and thirty succeeded, and were rewarded with a juxtaposition of meat feast and fizz, rock soundtrack and refined Signet Library setting. £55 gets you three courses (obviously one’s a burger), half a bottle of Pommery and a cocktail.
The Signet Library, 5, 6, 12 & 13 Aug, 7.45pm, £55
Back for a second year of transforming diners into performance artists over a roast dinner sandwich, this pop-up café is actually a non-stop interactive artworld. Guest artist-waiters, activities and themed days make every visit different, and a collaboration with Buzzcut adds leotards, messy props and dance three evenings a week. Expect pineapples and Coco Pops.
Pleasance Hunt & Darton Café, 3–25 Aug (not 5, 12, 19), 10am–5pm (café), 6pm–late (bar)
A ‘travelling parlour of enlightenment’ brings a series of lectures and masterclasses – but not as you remember them from uni. Sunday is devoted to gin and cooking, the highlight being a lunch ‘experience’ set 50 years in the future, exploring food sustainability. For post-enlightenment discussions over cocktails, check out Hendrick’s Parlour Bar.
One Royal Circus, 8–11 Aug, noon–11pm