Part of the rolling gentrification of Leith Walk that has seen some much better bars and eateries appear up and down the thoroughfare in the last few years, the Walnut launched at the end of 2015 as a small, independent venue offering a high standard of bistro cooking in simple surroundings: one room, mix’n’match chairs, wooden floor, light colour scheme.
In terms of accessibility, informality, sheer quality and its BYOB policy, it’s an absolutely lovely place to eat. A typical three courses here might involve pea and ham hock soup with poached egg and truffle oil to start; lamb hotpot with black pudding as a main; apple frangipane tart to finish. Vegetarians are very well catered for (roast carrot, goat cheese and walnut salad with sherry vinaigrette to start; chickpea and aubergine cassoulet as a main for example) while the BYOB idea means you can splash out on some wine to do justice to the food (Oddbins, Sainsbury’s Local and Tesco Express are all very close by while there’s a Majestic about 10 minutes’ walk down Leith Walk).
There's nothing intimidating or distracting here: just you, great cooking, decent wine, your date – and a bill that will seem pretty economical given the talent in the kitchen.