Not so long ago, wine bars in Edinburgh were relatively rare. Not anymore.
Over the last few years, the entire idea of the wine bar has had a Lazarus-style revival in the capital.
Of course, there were always plenty of bars selling wine. But, until recently, there were fewer where the wine was front and centre of the operation.
New wine bars in Edinburgh
Over the last couple of years, a new wave of additions includes Good Brothers plus Smith and Gertrude in Stockbridge.
In the West End, Fred Berkmiller’s Bar à vin has been flying the flag for natural, biodynamic and organic wines, usually accompanied by excellent cheese and charcuterie from small producers ranging from the Borders to Bordeaux.
A couple of weekends ago, David Ramsden expanded out from The Dogs to launch The Fat Pony on Bread Street.
And now Andrew Thompson has joined the fray with Clark & Lake on Gillespie Place in Tollcross.
It is billed as a charcuterie restaurant and bar.
Boards of Spanish, Italian or British meats and cheeses are served with breads, crackers, oat cakes and chutney.
Local suppliers IJ Mellis provide the cheese and the meats are sourced from three different producers based in Borough Market and Bermondsey, London.
In addition to the platters, there is a choice of small plates which change on a monthly basis.
Current options include cauliflower frittelle, zucchini fries, a classic pork Scotch egg and raclette cheese over potatoes made with a raclette machine specially imported from Switzerland.
Extensive wine list
All of the dishes are accompanied by an extensive wine list with each one available in 125ml, 175ml glasses as well as 500ml carafes or by the bottle.
These include an Albarino Lagar de Bouza from Galicia in Spain; a Cava de Ribeauville Riesling from Alsace, France; a Domaine Berrod Fleurie from Beaujolais and Santa Marena Espinos y Cardos Pinot Noir from Chile.
Those more tempted by beers will find an extensive selection of bottled beers available including Beavertown Gamma Ray, Neck Oil and Smog Rocket, Brooklyn Lager and Camden Gentlemen’s Wit.In a nod to the owner’s time spent living in Barcelona, Clark & Lake is the only Scottish bar to have Moritz Lager on tap.
The 5pm Dining blog raises a glass to them all. Chin-chin!