Monday, October 8, 2012

Deacon Brodie's Tavern

By Alexa Bourne

If you're ever in Edinburgh, you need to stop in my favorite pub, Deacon Brodie's. It sits right on the Royal Mile, closer to Edinburgh Castle than Holyrood House. It's small, by American standards, but it's often busy and always cozy. It is in the shape of a rectangle. When you walk in the door, the bar is on the left and several chairs and tables are spread throughout the right side and down the center. There are intricate carvings and decorations, and several “trinkets” with the Deacon Brodie's logo on them, such as T-shirts and mugs, etc. In the back of the room, there is a spiral staircase that takes you up to the restaurant. There are 4 tables squished together by the 2 windows that overlook the Royal Mile. Of course, those seats are usually full.

The food is good. I often eat haggis, neeps & tatties while I'm there. (If you're not familiar with haggis, here's a link to find out more.) And of course, I think the drinks are great too. Whenever I'm in Edinburgh, I spend time in here. I've sat in one of the bar seats next to the window and written. Whenever I'm in Edinburgh with friends and we go our separate ways for a few hours, Deacon Brodie's is my choice of places to meet up. Indeed, sitting in a Scottish pub, sipping Scottish beer and writing Scottish stories is pretty much my version of perfection. (All I'd need is a hot Scotsman to sit with me!)

But as much as I love Deacon Brodie's for my own reasons, I chose to write about it today because the pub has a history that I think you'll enjoy. It is named after one of the real life inspirations for Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson. William Brodie was born in 1741. He was respected throughout the city, made cabinets, and belonged to the town council. But at night, he fell victim to the dark side. He drank, gambled and ran up huge debts he couldn’t pay. So he resorted to burglary to pay his bills. Since part of his day work included installing and repairing locks in homes, he figured he had the perfect opportunity to break in and steal items to help pay his debts. Unfortunately, he ended up getting caught and in 1788 they hanged him. Rumor has it that Brodie was hanged on the 1st gallows in Edinburgh, the same gallows that he’d made the year before.
(Picture from Trip Advisor.)

So, see? This is the PERFECT place for an author to waste, I mean spend time writing. To learn more about one of my favorite places in Edinburgh, visit this website. I'm almost ashamed to say the last time I stayed in Edinburgh on my own, I ate here 5 out of 7 nights. (No, I didn't have haggis every night!) Yes, there are tons of great places to eat in Edinburgh, but this is where I'm most comfortable, as if somehow I belong here. Huh. Maybe I do. 


Victoria Roberts said...

I can definitely see the allure. What a neat place to sit and write. Thanks for sharing, Alexa!

Dawn Marie Hamilton said...

Sounds like a great place to hang, Alexa, and I love the t-shirt. :)

Paisley Kirkpatrick said...

Love this post, Alexa. Your photo makes the place look very inviting. I do hope to visit it some day. Always love your posts and photos. Thank you.

Alexa said...

Thanks, everyone! I can't imagine being in Edinburgh and NOT going.