Restaurants across the city may be booked to the hilt with tables of two this coming weekend, but where should you go for that important pre-dinner drink? Cocktail blogger The Mixolosopher has some suggestions.

Vesta Bar & Kitchen

(7-8 Queensferry St, Edinburgh EH2 4PA)

This West End bar and restaurant has teamed up with Daffy’s Gin for a drinkable riff on a bouquet of flowers, mixing the Perthshire distillery’s latest release of Mulberry Gin with fresh lemon and rose liqueur.

The creation is pink in hue, floral in flavour and infinitely less prickly than a dozen red roses.

Beauty & The Beast @ Cold Town House

(4 Grassmarket, Edinburgh EH1 2JU)

Kingsbarns – home of Darnley’s Gin and their recently-released single malt scotch – will be taking over Cold Town House in the Grassmarket from Monday 10th, offering the Cold Town Beauty (Darnley’s Original, hibiscus, apple and aromatic tonic) and the Beast Who Would Be King (a single malt twist on a piña colada using Kingsbarn’s Dream To Dram) throughout the week.

If you want to try their spirits ‘au naturelle’ then pop down on Thursday the 13th for some sampling.

Lanique Liqueur Pop-Up @ Tonic

(34A N Castle St, Edinburgh EH2 3BN)

Nothing says Valentine’s Day like roses so Lanique ‘Spirit Of Rose’ liqueur will be joining forces with the Tonic team to create a range of floral-forward drinks to suit all tastes.

Coming in various shades of pink, the cocktails see Lanique pairing off with prosecco or getting jiggy with ginger and spiced rum, with other combinations involving gin, raspberries or lychee.

Woodland Creatures

(260-262 Leith Walk, Edinburgh EH6 5EL)

Fancy a Valentine’s threesome? Well Woodland Creatures have a trio of tasty tipples on offer through the weekend.

Afrodite’s Garden combines local Pickering’s gin with rose, cranberry and a spiced foam; Red Rose embellishes prosecco with hints of apricot, orange and plum while Strawberry Éclair is chocolate-dipped strawberries and cream in a glass.

Black Hearts Club @ 4042

(40-42 Grindlay St, Edinburgh EH3 9AP)

Billed as an “anti-Valentine’s” weekend, 4042 near Usher Hall will be providing a safe haven from the lovey-dovey frolics of the 14th and 15th, while offering up a Potter-themed potion to boot.

A confession wall will allow punters to share stories of embarrassing dates or awkward first kisses, the 4042 photo booth will be transformed into a ‘kissing booth’ and a draught of Liquid Luck can be obtained and used (at your discretion), made with Ciroc Black Raspberry and Chambord.

The Raging Bull

(161 Lothian Rd, Edinburgh EH3 9AA)

Picture: @danielmcgowanphotography

The coffee-cocktail specialists at The Raging Bull have decided to decaffeinate for Valentine’s and will be mixing up a Rhuby Ring for the romantic weekend.

The drink showcases Eden Mill’s Spiced Rhubarb Crumble gin liqueur, shaken up with Eden Mill Hop gin, cranberry and citrus.

Sofi’s Bar

(63-65 Henderson St, Leith, Edinburgh EH6 6ED)

Leith lovers can choose from a brace of special cocktails at Sofi’s – and be in with a chance of winning a bottle of prosecco to boot.

This cosy nook on Henderson Street will be offering a Double Espresso Martini and a Pink Gin Daiquiri all through Valentine’s weekend.

Cocktail couples can then pop their names on a little cardboard heart and enter a prize draw for the bottle of bubbles.

Cushiedoos

Finally, for any romantics opting for a cosy night in, Cushiedoos Scottish Tonic have come up with a French Kiss cocktail to make at home.

Simply shake three parts gin, one part elderflower liqueur and one part Chambord over ice with some fresh lime juice.

Strain into two tall, ice-filled glasses and top with Cushiedoos. This sparkling Scottish tonic is free from the bitter tang of quinine and can be found in many good off-licenses around the city.

• READ MORE: Cushiedoos aims to be just the tonic for Scotland’s gin scene

About The Author

Iain Meldrum

Iain Meldrum (aka Mixolosopher) has over a decade of experience at the top of the drinks industry as both a bartender and trainer. He is passionate about all things alcoholic - though in a responsible and philosophical way, of course.

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