Bar, cafe, restaurant, venue and social hub – the Leith Depot wears a coat of many colours and wears it well.
The main bar area is an unpretentious and bright open space, with large picture windows facing onto Leith Walk and an impressive concrete-topped bar (poured and cast in situ by a local artist) running across the back wall. Decor is fairly minimalist, with exposed steel pillars, a few gig posters and prints of local interest. The bar’s name is taken from the now demolished bus depot that used to be right across the road and one of the seats in the bar is actually a repurposed former bus bench seat.
The beer selection is a mix of traditional favourites and newer offerings from the likes of Drygate, Williams Brothers and Crafty Brew. Two of the owners are from Ireland and are firm fans of the black stuff, so you are always guaranteed a quality pint of Guinness! The wine list is well sourced and priced and more than a few are available by the glass.
Food is available all day until about 9pm. The menu is mainly pescatarian and vegetarian, with many vegan dishes available as well. There are lots of small plates and huge sharing platters that are great for grazing or sharing if you must!
Upstairs, they have an intimate live music space that has to be one of the best small venues in Edinburgh. Depending on the band, it can get pretty hot, sweaty and loud up there – which is just as it should be! Gigs range from local bands who are just starting out to more established bands on tour and everything in between. There are also regular DJ slots and open mic sessions. The upstairs area is also available for private hire.
The Depot also have a very strong sense of community inclusion and host regular supper events to encourage people in the neighbourhood to ’Meet, greet and get together.’ During these events, the bar is closed for alcohol sales and free food and tea and coffee is provided to all comers.
Overall, it’s a cracking local bar with great food, music and a good heart. Family and dog friendly too.
Address: 138-140 Leith Walk, EH6 5DT
Phone: +44 131 555 4738