Edinburgh’s new Calton Hill restaurant: Everything we know so far about The Lookout

The Lookout has floor to ceiling glass walls, and is partially suspended over Calton Hills northwest slope (Photo: The Lookout)
The Lookout has floor to ceiling glass walls, and is partially suspended over Calton Hills northwest slope (Photo: The Lookout)

The summit of Calton Hill in Edinburgh will soon become a foodie destination, when The Lookout opens its doors later this week.

Opening to the public this Saturday (24 Nov), The Lookout is a partnership between popular Edinburgh eatery, Gardener’s Cottage, and Collective, who have redeveloped Calton Hill’s City Observatory site into an art gallery.

Interior decoration is minimal but modern and elegant (Photo: The Lookout)

Interior decoration is minimal but modern and elegant (Photo: The Lookout)

The Lookout will also be sister restaurant to bakery and licensed cafe, Quay Commons in Leith.

What will The Lookout look like?

Built to a modern design, The Lookout has floor to ceiling glass walls, and is partially suspended over Calton Hill’s northwest slope, giving the restaurant impressive panoramic views across Edinburgh and the Firth of Forth. There is even a terrace outside for sunny days or special evening occasions.

Interior decoration is minimal but elegant, emphasising that the eatery’s unique location is really the star of the show.

Dishes created and evolved at Gardeners Cottage over the last six years will be modernised to suit the The Lookouts vibe (Photo: The Lookout)

Dishes created and evolved at Gardeners Cottage over the last six years will be modernised to suit the The Lookouts vibe (Photo: The Lookout)

What will the atmosphere be like?

The place looks set to be an upmarket venue, with gourmet food and a fairly high prices on the a la carte menu.

The Lookout’s website suggests a dress code will be smart casual, but the restaurant serves breakfast as well as pre-theatre deals, so is unlikely to be overly formal.

What’s on the menu at The Lookout - and what are the prices like?

Dishes created and evolved at Gardener’s Cottage over the last six years will be modernised to suit the The Lookout’s vibe and served at the new restaurant. The food is mainly Scottish-inspired, and made using seasonal and local ingredients.

For the a la carte menu, prices are between £7 and £15 for a starter, and £19 to £26 for a main course. There are also sharing options for the table, including lobster and roasted duck.

Fixed price options at lunchtime or pre-theatre mean that diners will be able to enjoy two courses for £23, or three for £29.

For a special occasion, a set menu costs £50 per person and includes six tempting courses. The set menu is the only option for parties of six or more.

Breakfast will be available between 10am and 11:30am from Wednesday to Sunday. Early risers can look forward to the likes of artisan bread, fresh pastries made in Leith, fruit, yoghurt, granola, eggs, cured meat, cheese and smoked fish.

Can I book a table?

Reservations can currently be made online via a live booking system, or by email.

If you would like to treat someone else to a meal at The Lookout, they offer gift vouchers from £50 to £200 - available to buy online.

Are there any special events coming up at The Lookout?

They haven’t even opened their doors yet, but the restaurant are currently taking bookings for New Year’s Eve.

The special event will cost £250 per person. This price includes a glass of champagne on arrival, eight courses with paired wines, tea or coffee and petits fours, and a dram of whisky or glass of champagne before the bells.

Guests will also be invited to enjoy fireworks over the city’s skyline at midnight from the terrace.

The following morning, The Lookout will host a champagne breakfast for £40 a head. They’ll serve up fresh Scottish seafood, East Coast Cured meats, cheeses by IJ Mellis, breads, pastries and homemade preserves, alongside a potentially hangover-curing glass of champagne.