Capital diners encouraged to try something new with the launch of the third Edinburgh Restaurant Festival

Edinburgh diners are being challenged to ‘try something new’ and enjoy a world of culinary adventure in the Capital next month with the return of the Edinburgh Restaurant Festival (6 – 16 October 2016).

Published 22nd Sep 2016
Updated 8 th Aug 2023

The capital is currently enjoying a surge of new restaurant openings, and has more restaurants per head of population than any other city in the UK.

Festival producers EdinEvents hope that this means that people will be tempted to sample experiences and styles of food that they have never tried before, taking advantage of the 10 day programme of special events, tasting menus and offers.

Over 30 of the city’s restaurants have signed up to take part in this year’s Festival, from classic establishments such as Harvey Nichols, the Balmoral Hotel and the Waldorf Astoria, to new openings including Badger & Co, CAU, Cadiz, Cup Tea Lounge and Veeno.

This year’s programme will run throughout the city centre and west end areas and will feature a diverse mix of tempting treats to suit all tastes and budgets. Special events will include a ‘Meet the Suppliers’ Dinner at The Pompadour by Galvin where guests will be served a four course menu showcasing a selection of high quality produce from the restaurant’s premium suppliers.

Harvey Nichols are holding a special ‘Sensory Dinner’ in association with Nejma fragrance and Daffy’s Gin, and Taco Mazama will be hosting a Street Food Barbecue serving up Fish Tacos, freshly made corn tortillas, and Carolina Reaper Hot Wings.

EdinEvents has partnered with leading Scottish based restaurant reservation system, ResDiary, to deliver a reservation website dedicated to the Edinburgh Restaurant Festival and all participating restaurants – allowing users to easily discover and, more importantly, reserve their Edinburgh Restaurant Festival dining experience.

There will be an exciting new addition to this year’s programme in the form of the Festival’s ‘Moveable Feast’, on Thursday 13th October, this one-off gastronomic tour of the city will allow guests to eat five different courses in five different restaurants with a few ‘street tasting’ surprises to enjoy along the way.

And to top it off, there is such a thing as a 'free lunch' at this year’s festival. A fun new social media challenge, ‘Let’s Do Lunch’ will see a festival-branded table and chairs pop up in unexpected places around the city each weekday morning, inviting people to post a picture of themselves at the table to be in with a chance of winning a daily free lunch prize for two.

Roddy Smith, Chief Executive of Essential Edinburgh, the company behind EdinEvents, is excited to see the return of this popular festival to the City’s calendar. He commented: "There are so many exciting new restaurant openings in Edinburgh this autumn, building on our reputation as one of the UK’s top dining destinations, so we have lots to celebrate as the Edinburgh Restaurant Festival comes into its third year.

"This an extremely important and growing part of our economy, and the Festival is a wonderful way to promote our restaurant scene and showcase the breadth and diversity that is now on offer. In Edinburgh you really can go on a culinary journey around the world, and the city is bursting with different styles, flavours and menus, all served up to a world class standard.

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"We would urge everyone to come into the City Centre and West End this October to enjoy special events and deals at their favourite restaurants, but also to make time to try something new and enjoy a fresh taste of all that our restaurant scene has to offer."

Mike Conyers, CEO and Founder of Resdiary added: ‘As a company that is proud of our Scottish heritage, we are delighted to have partnered with EdinEvents to provide ResDiary's top class reservation technology for Festival diners, helping them to discover the full spectrum of food and drink on offer in Scotland's Capital city during the Edinburgh Restaurant Festival.’

• The Edinburgh Restaurant Festival runs from 6 th – 16 th October 2016 and you can view the full programme is available at or follow the event on Twitter with the #EdRestaurantFest 

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