style bar special
EDINBURGH BARS continued
Catwalk Café Bar 2a Picardy Place. 478 777]. Mon—Sun l()am—lam.
Perhaps the venue with the most serious claitn to the label of Style Bar iii lidinburgh. the (‘atwalk trulyjustifies its name. .\'ot only is it populated by the closest thing the capital has to a fashion elite. btit the runway down to the clubby lower bar also offers the ideal opporttmity for parading what you've got to the appraising crowd. The decor. complete with bare concrete and semi- transparent floor. is industrial chic at its best. softened in the evening by rows of flickering night lights. Downstairs. a variety of [Ms draw a crowd: look otit for Joseph Malik from Lizard Lounge on Fridays and (iordon llalliday/Mark Price on Saturdays.
Happy llUllI'.’ All pitchers £7.50 lie/ore 8pm every day.
City Café 19 Blair Street. 220 ()125. Mon—Sun l lam—lam.
As the grandfather of lidinburgh style bars. the (‘ity Cafe is as hip as ever. no dotibt casting a jaundiced eye over some of the glitzy young venues that come and go all around it. Ignoring recent gimmicks and sticking resolutely to its retro design. the (‘afe continues to attract a hip. young crowd that gathers companionahly around its funkily lit pool tables and flows happily between the relaxed main bar and its toilet-tiled downstairs extension. Live l).ls coolly go about their business every Friday and Saturday night. with Yogi llaughton and Murray Richardson drawing the usual appreciative crowd.
Cuba Norte Morrison Street. 321 1-130. Mon-Sun llam- lam.
For a hot blast of (‘aribbean American cheer on a chilly December night. simply step through the doors of (‘uba Norte and bask. An oddly-shaped bar with a full- sized tree poking tip through the stairwell. (‘uba Norte offers a generous mix of food and drink to a happy jumble
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of ages and nationalities. Particularly appreciated is the live flamenco oti Friday nights. when an enthusiastic crowd gathers in the lower bar to clap and stomp the night away. 'I‘ango. salsa. Latin and Afro-('uban music are all tossed into the mix Thu-SUI]. and the general ethos is one of full-blooded pleasure-seeking.
Happy hours Mon -I-’ri 5.30 8pm: eot‘lv'lai/ pitchers [7.95; ('al'ls/Jelze. Mil/er. Home Write £1.50.
EH1 Bar 8. Brasserie 107 High Street. 220 5277. Mon-Sun ()ani-lam.
Well situated with smiley staff and an inventive drinks list. lilll is a tiny elongated box. packed with a jumping mass of dressed—up out-for-a-good- timers. In spite of its size. lilll still finds space for its backroom I)Js (including Murray Richardson and Yogi llaughton on Saturday) to entertain a bright pre- club crowd heading off to the nearby Honeycomb. l'p-front without being lurid. the decor features glowing ttibes along the curved bar and its my n stylish variation on twinkly fairy lights and
. when the clubbers depart and the pace
slows. the bar is left to the qtiiet enjoyment of the late-night coffee sippers.
Happy hour: 3pm 8pm: all IH‘U pin! pitchers (lft'Ut‘k/(lflﬁ' £8.95 (£10.95 a! all other times ).
Iguana -ll Lothian Street. 22o 4288. Mon-Sun 9am- lam. i()pen till 3am during the festive season.)
Well established as the ftinkiest joint in the university area. Iguana boasts a young. trendy crowd that lives it tip to the ftill. A vast array of pitchers and shooters is sampled by a crush of large. sociable groups that do a lot of laughing. horsing about and looking each other tip and down from various vantage points in the two-level space. With entertainment frotn JD] International plus special gtiests on Friday and Saturday nights (and every night over the festive period). full-on style infuses every detail. from the meticulouslycreatedcocktails to the bank of four ever-flickering video
Indigo Yard 7 (‘harlotte Lane. 220 5003. Mon -Sun 8.30am lam. (()pen till 3am during the festive season.)
()ne of lidinbtirgh's most impressive bars in terms of imaginative use of an initially unpromising space. liidigo Yard continues to offer visual pleasure from its tented roof to its bare paved floor. The open bar area provides a congregating for the boisterous throngs of suited workmates that converge here in the early evening. giving way to still livelier gaggles on celebratory nights otit later
From left. clockwise. Catwalk Café, Café Aquarius, Iguana and Cuba Norte
on. The booth-like tables in the more cloistered back area are a refuge for couples and serious talkers. while the upper gallery offers the ideal people- watching platform for cruisers and voyetirs alike. The food on offer is equally as pleasurable.
Drinks promo/ions: I'i'i 5 7pm.
Maison Hector 47 I)eanhaugli Street. 332 5338. Mon Wed llam midnight; 'l'hu/liri llatii lam; Sat/Sun
()ne of the mellovs er options for the style bar jtiiikie. Maison llector gently slows the pace with its luxurious deep shades of velvet. its low lighting and its general air of tmhurried ease. Mostly a place to chill rather than party. it offers a glorious array
of cocktails by the jug and an admirably tempting non-alcoholic list. .\'ot one for open decks or big-name I)ls. llector's opts instead for smooth ja// on Sunday afternoons and live blues on 'l'hursday evenings. Lose yourself iii one of those great big sofas. grab yourself a cocktail and enjoy.
Malmaison Café Bar 1 Ton er Place. 468 5()()(). Mon Stiii lllam lam. .\'eitliei' glit/y nor clubby btit unfailingly civilised. the cafe bar of the Malmaison hotel is the ideal venue for those nights when you're all dressed tip and fancy something a bit sophisticated. Offering an ev er-lengthening list of cocktails. the bar has a suitably understated lirench air. featuring deep reds. large mirrors. old- fashioned cafe lights and dark wood panelling. 'l'lie attentive uniformed staff and the romantic lovv lighting tend to attract a more mature class of customer. btit the atmosphere rev s tip considerably as the night goes on. offering unrivalled opportunities for a bit of elegant carousing.
Monboddo Poiiit Hotel. 34 nrmti Street. 22] 5555. Sun-'l‘hu ltlam midnight; l‘ri/Sat lilam lam.
(iltissy. glass} and oo/ing style. Monboddo is the place to perch. pout and pose the night away. .-\ spacious. open square of shiny black. yellow and chrome stlt‘fttc‘c‘s tlc‘c‘til‘ulc‘tl \\ ill] L'lllL‘ black sculptures and staffed by smart. friendly cocktail evpcrts. the bar is lilled vv ith the hum of cool conversation. the rattle of cocktail shakers and a little incongrtiotisly perhaps the bti// of a television set. Named after an eccentric Scots genius vv ith a penchant for parties. Monboddo is frequented by the kind of \vell—dressed and convivial attention seekers that he would no doubt have adored.
Happy llHlll‘.‘ Sim /-'ri 5 7pm. Negociants 45 Lothian Street. 225 oil}. Mon Sun 9am 3am. t()pen till 3am during the festive seasoii.i
Lovv key and relatively unpretentious. .\'cgociants is a popular meeting place for a loyal. sttideiity follow ing that appreciates its welcome and its laid~back sly lc‘. l'pslaii's is a bree/y. casual sil-