10 best cocktail bars in Edinburgh

Lucky Liquor Cocktail Bar Edinburgh

After a walk down the Royal Mile and a busy day of sightseeing, it’s time to settle down in one of the best cocktail bars in Edinburgh. Opt for a reliable classic or go bold with eclectic and creative cocktail concoctions. 

With a lively drinks scene, Edinburgh is a haven for unique and inviting bars. From well-known cocktail bars in prime positions to hidden gems disguised as shops or disused buildings, there is something for everyone.

Discover the best cocktail bars in Edinburgh with this complete guide to the city’s finest watering holes.

1. Nightcap

3b York Place, Edinburgh, EH1 3EB

Nightcap is a hidden gem located in the heart of Edinburgh. Despite being a fairly new addition to the Edinburgh cocktail bar scene, it’s already made quite a name for itself.

The small, unassuming bar is easy to miss, but those who find it are in for a treat. Nightcap specialises in delicious cocktails. The bartenders are experts at mixing up custom drinks and pushing the boundaries of what a cocktail can be.

Located in a former printing press in the heart of the city, Nightcap is equal parts bar and laboratory – a recipe for an eccentric evening!

The menu features both classic and experimental cocktails, all made with the highest quality ingredients. The cocktail menu is constantly changing, so there’s always something new to try.

Whether you’re looking for something familiar or something completely new, Nightcap is sure to have something to suit your taste. If you can’t decide, the knowledgeable staff are always on hand to help you make a selection. 


2. Dragonfly 

52 West Port, Edinburgh, EH1 2LD

Re-established in 2018 as a ‘revival of the original spirit of the Edinburgh cocktail scene’, Dragonfly is a trendy cocktail bar with a laid-back atmosphere.

The menu features a wide variety of both delectable and exciting cocktails. All of which are expertly crafted by the mixology wizard bartenders. As the menu changes frequently, you’ll never be short of new and electrifying drinks to try.

With Dragonfly-inspired artwork adorning the walls, Dragonfly also has an extensive list of spirits and wines. This makes it the perfect place to enjoy a drink before heading into town for a night of dancing your heart out. 

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3. Tonic 

34a North Castle Street, Edinburgh, EH2 3BN

Tonic is a must-visit for any cocktail lover. The bartenders are true mixologists, able to create tantalising drinks that are both complex and delicious.

The atmosphere strikes the perfect balance between lively and not too loud. While the bartending staff are always happy to chat about their latest creations. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even order a bespoke cocktail made to your own specifications.

Whether you’re looking for a pre-dinner drink or a nightcap, Tonic Bar is undoubtedly one of the best cocktail bars in Edinburgh.


4. Heads and Tales Gin Bar 

1a Rutland Place, Edinburgh, EH1 2AD

The Heads and Tales Gin Bar in Edinburgh is the perfect place to unwind after a long day of sightseeing. This stylish bar is devoted to all things gin. They offer an impressive range of both classic and intriguing cocktails.

Whether you’re a gin lover or a total novice, all are made with fresh, high quality ingredients. It doesn’t matter if you’re in the mood for a refreshing G&T or something a little more adventurous. Heads and Tales will have something that will suit your taste.

The knowledgeable staff are on hand to give recommendations, and they’re always happy to explain the different flavours and styles of gin on offer. 


5. The Cocktail Mafia 

15 Charlotte Ln, Edinburgh, EH2 4QZ

The Cocktail Mafia is a must-visit for anyone in Edinburgh looking for a great cocktail that hits the spot every time. It manages to merge glamour with theatrics and elegance with the edgy.

The friendly bartenders are experts at mixing drinks, and they’re constantly coming up with new and innovative concoctions to delight your senses.

The atmosphere is cosy and inviting, and the music is always just right. On the menu you’ll find both classic cocktails and some of the most creative and unusual drinks you’ll ever taste.

Whether you’re in the mood for something fruity or something strong, you’ll find the perfect drink at The Cocktail Mafia. So next time you’re in the Scottish capital, be sure to stop by and enjoy this eclectic cocktail bar in Edinburgh. Cheers!


6. The Raging Bull 

161 Lothian Rd, Edinburgh, EH3 9AA

The Raging Bull is a vibrant Edinburgh cocktail bar decorated with an array of colourful lights, and with an upbeat atmosphere to match. The menu features a range of classic and contemporary cocktails, all of which are mixed to perfection by the talented bartenders.

The Raging Bull is particularly well known for its Espresso Martini variations, from a salted caramel twist to a Baileys infused option. Whether you’re looking for somewhere to enjoy a leisurely drink or you’re keen to dance the night away, The Raging Bull is the perfect place to be.

With a variety of small plates also available, The Raging Bull is the ideal place to enjoy a night out with friends. It’s wild and it’s whacky, and you’re guaranteed a night of fun and frivolities.


7. Panda and Sons 

79 Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 4NF

This unique bar in Edinburgh is hidden behind a secret door in an unassuming shop front with a nod to the vintage-style barbershop – and it’s certainly worth seeking out.

Once inside, you’ll find yourself transported to a 1920s speakeasy, complete with vintage furnishings and Del Boy-esque staff. The menu at Panda and Sons features a wide range of mouth-watering cocktails, all of which are expertly crafted by the mixologists.

Whether you’re looking for an old classic or something strong enough for prohibition, Panda and Sons has the perfect drink for you. So why not take a chance and step through the secret door? You’re sure to have a memorable night.


8. The Lucky Liquor Co. 

39A Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 3NH

Lucky Liquor Cocktail Bars in Edinburgh

The chic, industrial-style space is always buzzing with energy – and the fantastic bartenders at The Lucky Liquor Co are on hand to whip some memorable cocktails

The menu features a wide range of cocktails to suit all tastes, as well as an impressive selection of wine and beer. From a refreshing G&T to a delicious Lychee Martini, The Lucky Liquor Co. is the perfect place to enjoy a well-earned drink with friends.

The atmosphere at The Lucky Liquor Co. is lively and fun, making it a top choice for the best cocktail bars in Edinburgh.


9. The Last Word

44 St Stephen St, Stockbridge, Edinburgh, EH3 5AL

The Last Word is a hidden gem in Edinburgh’s Old Town. The cocktail bar is cosy and intimate, with a great selection of drinks on offer. Dimly lit, with rich wood panelling and plush leather chairs, The Last Word is a must-visit.

The knowledgeable bartenders are passionate about their drinks, and they’re always happy to chat about their personal favourites if you can’t make your mind up.

The Last Word is the perfect place to go for a quiet drink or two. It’s definitely worth trying out if you’re looking for one of the best cocktail bars in Edinburgh.


10. Never Really Here 

89 Rose St N Ln, Edinburgh, EH2 3DX

Never Really Here is a speakeasy-esque cocktail bar in Edinburgh, located down a small cobbled street off the Royal Mile. Blink and you’ll miss it though; from the outside, the bar is disguised as an old unused building.

The menu features classic cocktails with a twist, such as the Never Really Here Martini made with rosemary-infused gin.

Never Really Here is the perfect place to enjoy a few drinks with a friend, relax after a long day of sightseeing, or simply escape the hustle and bustle of Edinburgh’s city centre. Note that the seating area is relatively limited, so you’ll need to time your arrival to get a coveted spot.

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Looking for more Edinburgh food and drink inspiration? Read my guide to the best cafes in Edinburgh, discover eight amazing Edinburgh restaurants with a view, or seek out the best brunch places in Edinburgh

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