Piggly, GF and I spent a happy half day in Edinburgh a few days ago.
The 3 of us are currently whiling away a couple of weeks in Ye Olde Scottish Borders, dog and house-sitting for pals, but by Thursday the truly dreadful and depressing Horribleness that was the result of my last hair cut had finally become Absolutely Unbearable, and so we nipped North along the A1 so that I could, if necessary, have my head shaved (believe me… even that would have been an improvement) whilst GF and Piggly stretched their paws and took in the interesting sights, smells and sounds of the big city.
As things turned out, the hairdressery place was right next door to the famous Valvona and Crollas Italian deli and coffee shop, and I barely managed to suppress a squeal of excitement at the prospect of getting my crubeens on all that lovely food after the haircutting had taken place. So, we sat happily down outside at a table in the sun and ordered two coffees, to pass the remaining 15 minutes until my hair cut was due.
It was a pity that the coffees didn’t arrive until approximately 20 micro-seconds before I was due at the hairdressers, but I assumed the delay had been the result of some unfortunate random hitch in the kitchen, swigged down the coffee (good job it wasn’t hot, then…) and trotted happily away to be sheared, promising to text Piggly and GF when the process was complete.
When I emerged an hour later, though, I found P and GF still seated where I had left them. Apparently it had taken almost that long for Alan to order a piece of chocolate cake and a glass of red wine. He’d progressed through Mild Irritation to Monstrous Indignation, and had been well on the way to developing Incandescent Rage before he’d noticed that customers all around him were apparently experiencing similar difficulties. At that stage he’d settled back to watch, and the service had been so comprehensively awful that, by the time I returned, a large helping of schadenfreude had restored him to his more usual good humour.
Not having an other hour to spare, we decided against risking another drink at V&C’s, and so set off to find lunch elsewhere. We weren’t sure where to go, but George Street was in bright sunshine and so we turned in. A little way along we came across a spare table outside the Tempus Bar & Restaurant. It didn’t look particularly flash, but what a revelation it turned out to be!
A friendly, efficient waiter arrived quickly to take our order, and in less than 30 seconds he had us sorted with the promise of a bottle of red wine, lunch menus and a bowl of water for Piggly. The wine soon followed, accompanied by two large glasses of iced water for us (bonus points from Alan, for no lemon) and a China bowl of water for the wee monster. The menu was scrummy too. Alan had a delicious-looking Crombie beef-burger with maple-smoked bacon, local cheese, pickle and real chips…
…and I had mussels in white wine, shallot and parsley cream, with plenty of crusty bread to mop up all the best bits (at only £6.75, the mussels were great value for a really delicious and filling lunch, I reckon).
Piggly is on a bit of a diet, and stuck bravely to a few mussels, a bit of lettuce and a small piece of sauce-soaked bread.
We spent a happy hour, chatting and guzzling in the sun. Our waiter told us we were welcome to stay as long as we liked, but eventually we had to make tracks in order to take all three terrorists out for a good walk.
Next time I’m in Edinburgh I’ll definitely be making my way back to Tempus for lunch, coffee or dinner. I think I’ll be giving Valvona and Crolla a miss, though.