Thursday 1st May 2014
This pub’s ecclesiastic origins are fairly obvious as one approaches and as you enter you cannot miss the “All Saints Parsonage” in stone above the door. And of course another clue is the extant All Saints church standing right next door. So this is a pub housed within the former home of its minister. Once inside the feel is secular with the only clue of its origins being some stained glass windows.
Its main room is to the left of the entrance and this contains the bar. In front of that is a medium-sized room with an iron stove within an old fireplace. The surround of which is bare stone. The furniture is all wooden and provides a good pub feeling. On the walls there are old advertising signs and mirrors. To the right of the entrance is a smaller area that has its own side to the L-shaped bar counter. On this side a spiral staircase descends to the toilets.
The pub was founded in 1995 and was from the outset created to be a beer speciality pub and it certainly succeeds in that. They normally sell up to nine cask beers.
There are two regulars and these are:
Stewart Brewing (Edinburgh) Pentland IPA (3.9%) and from the same brewery, Holy Grace (4.4%)
In addition there is always a beer from the Highland and also the Alchemy brewery. So, on the occasion of my visit the guest cask beers comprised the following:
Highland Brewing (Stannay, Orkney) Pale Ale (4.7%)
Alchemy (Livingston, West Lothian) Bad Day at the Office (4.5%)
Out There (Newcastle upon Tyne) Next Stop Mars (8.0%)
Tiny Rebel (Newport, Gwent, Wales) Bilabong (4.6%)
Belhaven, (Dunbar, East Lothian) 80/- (3.9%)
Finally there were two from Sonnet 43 (Coxhoe, Co. Durham):
American Pale Ale (5.4%) and Bourbon Milk Stout (4.3%)
So, as can be seen this a great beer destination pub. It also does food, mostly the normal type of pub fare but their home-made burgers are highly commended. They also offer over 70 malt whiskies.
However there was thing that prevents me from giving it a total recommendation and that is some of the customers. There was a large noisy group in that afternoon that literally grabbed tables where other customers left and also jostled people waiting at the bar. Luckily, they’re not going to be there all the time, thank goodness!
Cloisters Bar, 26 Brougham Street, Edinburgh EH3 9JH. Tel: 0131 229 9997
Open: Monday-Thursday 12.00-24.00; Friday-Saturday 12.00-01.00; Sunday 12.30-24.00
Many buses stop at the main road juction in Tollcoss. these are 10, 11, 15, 16, 23 and 27.
However the best is route 24 which runs along Brougham Street and stops right outside.