As Festival Fever swoops down upon us yet again and we storm hungrily onto the streets seekingout culture in the most unlikely of places. may we never forget that one cannot live on art alone. But one can get close to it. The riiost earnest cafe cultivators will testify that some of the best cafes around are to be found in the cool basements or lofty garrets of Edinburgh‘s art galleries. theatres and cinemas. liating out is another matterof course and. sad to say . Edinburgh is not the best place for it. l he most determined of summer lunchers will find sunny spots outside. but sometimes at a hitter cost: I spent a frantic lunch at the (iallery of Modern A rt on a very windy day last year. trying to keep the hair out of my eyes. and other people’s scrunchedaip napkins out of my food. But this summer is promising better things and. apart from the (iallet‘y til \liitlct'n :\t‘l. the Netherbow and the Botanics also hay e ample space for eating outside. Be sure to gauge the tone of the
cafe before you go. ’1 he Netherbow is good for a pre-play' baked potato. but try the 'l'raverse for post-concert night-cap. for novel-reading and writing. The l-‘ruitriiarket's the place to go. there‘s plenty of light and Max [irnst‘s sculptures are sure to inspire YOU.
I CITY ART CENTRE 2 Market Street.225 2424c“ (row Sat. Moriﬂl’tie‘mm 5pm; ch.'l fiiiis. l‘l'l ‘Iam ‘)pm;Suri
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includesa selectionof suladsand quiche and there is usually a hot dish. but no Peruvian grub on offer. The cakes and biscuits are better. although there‘s nothing spectacular about the coffee and tea. The real strength ofthe place is its size and shape a» big w indows fringed with plants which look onto the street -~ and the generous round tables. The toilets are quite impressive too. I THE FRUITMARKET GALLERY Market Street 225 2383. Mon-Sat lllani— lffpm: Sun noon 5pm. There are few arty cafes to rival the lr'ruitmarket's. In fact it’s almost tempting to skip the exhibition in favour of its airy continentalstudio atmosphere. .ltist sitting in it makcsyou feel qtiite artistic. .\lost of the dishcsare eitfier segetai tan or sea-food based and you can eat well here for tiiidei L“. Dishes include r‘oiogelre punirieiii/iti and avocado terrori- and mango nreririgues or humour and toffee/ire for ptid. .-\ ftill meal would cost £0» £1”. but remember to leave room tor the exhibition you were tempted to skip on the way up. I FILMHOUSE l.othian Road. 22.\ 2h.\'.\ Daily 9am 2pm. lunch is sery ed front noon 2.3flpm and dinnci'5 9pm. The most you pay for a hot dish here is L2 5“ and there is an or rgrnal range of them I particularly recommend the ( r’ii/li mid true/ten a snip at £1 05 btit pciliapsnot the best choice if you're going to sit next tosomeonc famousat a premiere l otsot the food is \cgctarian includingthe infamous I-i/ni/iouse Hake w hich is around £2.50.
I GALLERY OF MODERN ART Belford Road.55hts’f)2l Mon Sat lff.3tlam 5.3flprri;Sun ll.3tfam 5.30pm [D]. Throughout the year this cafe attracts hordes of Sunday lunchers and is well known for its very superior cuisine. (let there early it you want sorrietliing light the croissants. ('lieexy eggand gruyere mid limit are if .(iflaiid L l .75 and sell very quickly ()theiwrse there are usually four or five dishes to chose front. a
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"11.1 ed cheese (or! and s ulud costs £2.70 as does smoked haddock mousse. The outside terrace and garden make for good summer lunches and the teapots are art pieces in themselves.
I NETHERBOW 43 High Street. 5569579. Mon-Sat “lam-11.30pm. Nothing thrilling here btit the food is pleasant and the prices -- hoyering around the £2 mark — very reasonable. especially when you take into account the ideal location ofthe place. There is a large area for eating outside - unusualin Edinburgh -andit’s unlikely to be ftill at lunchtime.
I THE OUEEN'S HALL ( ‘lerk Street . (r68 2(flf). Daily llarii late. The cafe opensto concert-goers at llam for croissants. tea and coffee and again. during the interval of the morning concert. at noon. ltopens tothe publicat 12.3llpmior lunch -which includes a variety of hot dishes. including vegetarian ones. and salads. quiches etc. The same applies in the evening when supper is scry ed from about (rpm onwards (evening concerts start between
'7- 7.30pm .-\s you moye along with your tray . you may feel reminded ofthe canteen at school. but you should have dismissed such uncharitable thoughts by the time you sit dow n. It's a nice place to be. w ith a friendly atmosphere.
I ROYAL BOTANIC GARDENS TERRACE CAFE 552 Holt». Mon Sat lffam~5pm; Sun llam 5pm Whetheryou'rethere for Andy (ioldsworthy 's sculptures or jUst to hang out near the rhododendrons. this isa great place for a cup of tea or something stronger on a sultry summer‘s day". Lunch is served from noon 2.30pm with the usual range of hot and cold bits and pieces from £1 £3. Not so tisual are their help-yourself salad bowlsat 75p. £1 .5flor £4 for a large one. This idea has been slow to catch on in lzdinburgh -— Bravo Botanics? Obviously the Terrace isthe place to be seen. but if it pours with rain you cart always dash inside. there is plenty of room tfiere too.
I ROYAL LYCEUM THEATRE ( irindlay
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Street. 2299697. Daily lflam midnight. The Lyeeum's hard-working chefs offer a bistro lunch. from noon—3pm. which usually costs about £3. livening a lacarte meals range in price from about £5-- £8 and botfi lunch and dinner include vegetarian dishes. Try the rrouiro/ledin oar/near or the poussm and finish off w ith a sorbet. ice cream or mousse. Facilities for the disabled are not good.
I ROYAL MUSEUM OF SCOTLAND Chambers Street. Mon-Sat lt)arri—-1.3Upni;Strri 2-4.3(lpm |Dl Nota sophisticated place to come and pose with a French novel and a packet of (rtlll/Ufyt'y but the atmosphere is very friendly and light and the food so cheap it'sbeyond belief. Pizza is 40p. quiche £1 and salad 40p a portion. The staff pride themser es on the traditional Scottish home cooking. Cakes and biscuits are good — the .lli/lirmuire's shortbread leaps to mind — and you get a generous amount of tea in your pot. On top of all this you're helping to subsidise all those free exhibitions and lectures.
I THE TRAVERSE THEATRE 112 West Bow. 226 2633. Daily lflam-latc. You no longer have to climb winding stairs to get to the cafe. which sell some sort of'cold food throughout the day. liverythingis vegetarian apart from a concessionary spot of chicken or ham in the some ofthe sandwiches. Usually there is a hot dish available like nu! roast or lentil/ouf. Salads are (i5p each and quiche and salad £1.90. Then there are cheesecakes. mousses and yoghurts for dessert.
I THEATRE WORKSHOP 24 l lamilton Place. 226 5425. Daily ltlani—late (closed 26 Aug). The ambitious folk at the Workshop are hoping to serve hot food all day long and deep into the night. Doubtless they are catering for the late-night cabaret audiences — alwaysa ravenous lot. There will also be salads and vegetarian food and a good thespian atmosphere -- you may rub shoulders with the famous.