Spanish food is one of my favourites, and Edinburgh is a city with a massively under-rated food scene. While Glasgow has always taken the lead in terms of great places to eat out, Edinburgh is very quickly catching up.
The city itself has a large Spanish population, and I am very pleased to call many my friends. They have helped me write this post, have shown me the way and advised on which is the most delicious, authentic and affordable Spanish restaurant in Edinburgh.
- Most Authentic - The Black Hoof - 4.8*
- Best All Rounder - Tapa - 4.7*
- Best Location - La Sal - 4.6*
- Most Interesting - Indaba - 4.7*
- The Quaint-est - PIGGS - 4.7*
- The Biggest - Cafe Andaluz - 4.4*
The Best All-Rounder - Tapa, Leith
After a close call, we feel that the best all-around Spanish restaurant is Tapa. They are located at Shore Place in the heart of Leith, which is an easy bus journey from the centre of town.
Tapa has it all: extremely friendly, attentive and knowledgable staff (who seemed passionate about the food themselves), a warm and cosy atmosphere and a menu packed with amazing Tapa to showcase the best of Spanish gastronomy.
From end to end - Tapa is a fantastic experience. While it may be refined, high class and delicious, it retains the free-flowing relaxed character and atmosphere the Spanish are known for.
The Best Location - La Sal, Leith Walk
Las Sal offers one of the best front window views you could ask for and is an olives throw away from the Edinburgh Playhouse. So the Spanish tapas bar should be on your agenda while you're in the city for a show.
What sets La Sal apart from the other Spanish restaurants in Edinburgh is the atmosphere. Everything from the presentation on the plate, to the tables, decor and food is perfect. It is the ideal place to sit back, relax and enjoy stunning Spanish food with an imported glass of wine or beer.
A clear favourite from our visit was the carrillada ibérica which is a beautiful pork cheek strew.
The Most Interesting - Indaba, Tolcross
Indaba is an Edinburgh institution, and they offer some of the most interesting Spanish food in the whole city. Their premise is to combine the best of South Africa and Spain on a plate, and they do that very well.
Both countries are known for their cured meat and bombastic flavours so to see them both compete is interesting, to say the least.
The last time we had been to Indaba was before the pandemic, so we know the menu may have changed but if memory serves correctly, the Croquetas and Boereworse were to die for.
The Quaint-est - PIGGS, Cannongate
Pigs is a beautiful little wine bar in Edinburgh's Cannon Gate; it is as stunning on the outside as it is on the inside, and the food is just as stunning.
As a wine bar, this place is one of my favourite places to stop by when I am in the city. It is like stepping out from Scotland out onto a Spanish street corner.
If you're looking for a relaxing glass of wine, with well above-average snacks and sandwiches then PIGGS should be on your Spanish stop off.
The Biggest - Cafe Andaluz, George St
The most well-known Spanish restaurant in Edinburgh is Cafe Andaluz (who also owns Cadiz upstairs). There are a few of these restaurants around Scotland and you'll find them on George Street and George IV Bridge in Edinburgh.
While the food is really great, a few of my Spanish friends often turn their noses up at the thought of going there. The main argument is that it is 'style over substance' but they can't deny that Cafe Andaluz is the most popular Spanish tapas bar in the city.
Personally, I thought the food and atmosphere are great and it is a safe place to eat if you're not comfortable with going outside the beaten track.