It might have been a while between drinks for you at The Edinburgh Castle. If fact, you might have yet to visit the Castle in your time. But this week, we've got plenty of reason to head to this long-time CBD pub on the corner of Pitt and Bathurst — it's reopening after a huge revamp. Soon, you'll be feasting on dishes created by ex-North Bondi Fish chef Daniel Lanza and choosing from a 100 percent Aussie wine list curated by expert sommelier Matt Dunne.
Luchetti Krelle (Momofuku Seiobo, Bar Brose, ACME, Barrio Cellar, The Butler) took care of the design, refurbishing the ground level bar and totally revamping the first floor, while keeping — and emphasising — the building's heritage features. There's now a beautiful cocktail lounge and an outdoor courtyard — this ain't no run-of-the-mill city pub.
Lanza's menu subtly references the Edinburgh's important literary history as one-time home to Aussie writer and poet Henry Lawson. Tasty morsels on the snacks list include house-made damper with garlic herb butter, house-made potato scallops with chicken salt (!), a pork and sage sausage roll with green tomato chutney, and a ploughman's plate with ham, cheddar and house pickles. If you're up for something more substantial, dig into a devon and cheddar toastie (yep, DEVON), saltbush chicken schnitzel with crispy potatoes, celeriac and chunky tomato sauce, or crumbed barramundi burger with iceberg lettuce and fennel slaw.
"We aim to offer people some comfort, in being able to visit and experience a classic, satisfying, Australian pub meal, yet still experiment with reinventing the wheel of what people expect, by modernising traditional menu items," says Lanza.
Meanwhile, the signature cocktail list includes the Lawson's Cup (hibiscus-infused gin, Aperol, pomegranate, mint, lime, ginger beer), the City Slick (Hendricks gin, lemon, basil, lavender, sea salt) and a fancy take on an espresso martini (Abslout vodka, Patron Café, cold drip coffee, salted caramel, popcorn).
Find the refurbished Edinburgh Hotel at 294 Pitt Street. Open Monday to Wednesday 10am-12am, Thursday, 10am-1am, Saturday 12pm-2am and Sunday 12pm-10pm.