“Weasels-and Stoats-and so on…”
The Castle Street birthplace of Kenneth Grahame has recently been transformed into a bar and eatery
Review by Charlie Fletcher, Photography by Gavin Craigie
Badger & Co professes to offer drinks and ‘casual dining’ as opposed to a formal restaurant and bar. While definitely not a themed establishment, there are hints to the Wind in the Willows – from the name to the décor (there has been no cull in these parts).
Despite the presence of the furry fiends, I ventured into Badger & Co to be greeted by an impressive ‘whisky window’ and an even more picturesque bar. The bartender referred us to a member of the waiting staff who then escorted my guest and I to our table. The furniture was very striking, typical dining chairs are forgone for wall-length chesterfield sofas and matching armchairs. This way of seating allows patrons to feel at home, aided by the loud laughter and jovial atmosphere stemming from our accompanying diners.
On my visit I enjoyed a three-course dinner. The food was very well executed and served in copious quantities. The menu was not large and the dishes on offer are rather more ‘classics’ than diverse. This is by no means a criticism and the almost Victorian menu is to my taste. The menu focuses around three pies, of which I had the Scottish game pie. Even served without any carbs, the pie was more than filling and the puff pastry was excellent. Aside from pies a collection of meat and fish dishes are available. Badger & Co prides itself on sourcing local produce for their menu. Food is available throughout the day and includes dedicated breakfast and lunch menus – both of which I have unfortunately not sampled. Those less social diners will be relieved to know that a private dining room can be booked.
Aside from the great cuisine, an inviting cocktail list has been composed. I sampled both the ‘Willow Wren’ and the ‘Picnic on the Banks’. Both drinks featured high quality spirits and were far from a traditional cocktail offering (the picnic on the banks was a mix of pinot grigio, pear vodka, chickpea, elderflower and celery).
The cocktails are priced in line with other George Street offerings but the menu has a lot more character and personality than the norm. A dozen draught beers and ciders are available. The selection covers the usual – Heineken – to the craft, Edinburgh brew – Stewart Brewing’s First World Problems.
Badger & Co, 32 Castle Street, Edinburgh. EH2 3HT / 0131 226 5430 / email@example.com / Open 8am – 1am every day.