Named after Sir Walter Scott’s baronial mansion in the Scottish Borders, The Abbotsford is just as beautiful and has been popular with performers and writers for many years, including Scottish Renaissance poets like Hugh MacDiarmid, Sorley MacLean and Sydney Goodsir Smith. It is also the ‘howff’ for The Scottish Review of Books.
The Abbotsford is one of Edinburgh’s best preserved bars to have survived from the ‘Golden Age’ of Scottish pub design. In 1902 the original bar was demolished and Jenners & Co decided to commission famed pub and brewery architect P.L. Henderson, whose designs include Deacon Brodies (1894), Leslies Bar (1896) and The Central Bar (1899) to design the new Abbotsford Bar that stands today. In 2007 the bar was refurbished to its original glory.
For other bookish boozers in Edinburgh see our 10 Edinburgh… Literary Pubs.