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Leven Street, Edinburgh

Colourful, lively bar popular with students and workers alike for its good craic and great cocktails.

The 2016 edition of The List's Eating & Drinking Guide is out now – only £5.95 (+p&p).

This review is taken from the 2015 edition.

Snugly situated where Tollcross teeters into Bruntsfield, the design of this sleek tavern reflects its target market – modern, discreetly affluent and fashionably turned out. Equally welcoming to drinkers and diners, the food is a cut above that offered by most local saloons, with innovative starters including deep-fried arancini balls, oozing with cheese in a rich tomato reduction. Paired with a generous glass of the house white – crisp sauvignon blanc – it’s a lovely way to whet your appetite. Mains include a yellow fish curry (using fish of the day) served with squash, chickpeas and a raw slaw, as well as a pie of the day or tempting seasonal stew. Those after a serious sugar hit could go for chocolate tablet waffles for dessert, but the house batch cocktails make an equally appealing finale – try a palate-cleansing Clover Club. There’s live music to enjoy along with your pint at the regular Sunday sessions, and with a sun-trap beer garden for the warmer months, the Blackbird is a welcoming spot at any time of year.

  • High point: Artistic interior matches the quality of food and drink
  • Low point: It's a popular spot, so unless you book a table, you may have to hover at the bar
  • Notable dish: Yellow fish curry
  • Private dining: 35 in dining section.
  • Provides: Vegetarian options (at least ¼ main courses), Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Outdoor tables, Free wi-fi
  • Music on stereo: Lively beats.
  • Live entertainment: Sunday sessions live music with local musicians. Also have live music at special events e.g. New Year and Blackbird's birthday.
  • Capacity: 60 (plus 60 in garden)
  • Largest group: 64
  • Open since: 2012
  • Number of wines sold by the glass: 16
  • House wine: £16 per bottle
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Source: food.list.co.uk
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