The Edinburgh Castle – an Ancoats pub that’s earned its name as one of the best in the UK

It scooped a big accolade this week.

Daisy Jackson Daisy Jackson - 25th January 2024

It’s no great secret that modern-day Ancoats has a pretty strong restaurant scene. Local legends, rave national reviews, and even a Michelin star have all found their home on these streets.

But now there’s a new accolade for the area, with The Edinburgh Castle pub catching the eye of the Top 50 Gastropubs list.

The Blossom Street pub and restaurant, snapped up by the same team behind Cottonopolis in 2019, had been in a sorry state of neglect before.

But under their steer The Edinburgh Castle has been turned into a beautiful British pub in the heart of Ancoats, all dark green walls, polished wood, brass candlesticks and an occasional taxidermy duck.

While downstairs is more of a classic boozer, upstairs is a smart bistro restaurant space – and it’s now a restaurant space that’s been named the 24th best gastropub in the UK.


The Edinburgh Castle is the only Greater Manchester pub to make the list (though the north west in general did pretty damn well).

Executive chef Shaun Moffatt and his team have created a menu full of comforting plates that will do an even better job of soothing a bad day than a phone call to your mum.


For starters, there are dishes like battered cod cheeks – fish with substance encased in a light, crisp batter, and served on a homemade chunky tartare sauce.

Huge cuts of British meat are treated right, like a gigantic pork chop served in slices swimming in jus, with the bone still standing on the plate like a porky radio tower.

A spelt risotto comes on a pretty patterned china plate with a wig of grated parmesan on top and a jewel-yellow egg yolk in the centre ripe for the popping.


When it comes to puds, you’d be a fool to skip over the Madeleines. Freshly baked, you can order a dozen or a half. The shell-shaped cakes are light as a pillow, with crispy edges, showered in icing sugar and ready to be dunked in a pot of cream.

There’s not really a dud on the menu (there can’t be, once you reach the hallowed halls of the Top 50 Gastropubs) and The Edinburgh Castle pub is proving that Ancoats probably can do it all.

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Featured image: The Manc Group