For those who have been living under a rock – Edinburgh is (finally) on the last weekend of the Fringe.
I will put my hands up and say I find the Fringe completely overwhelming. I never go to see as many shows as I should. I spend far too much time complaining about anything related to it that is has almost become a hobby. The traffic, the hoards that descend, and plonk themselves in my favourite places leaving no room for lil ol me. I’m half joking because I know how super lucky I am to live here and I will miss it as soon as it’s gone.
The Fringe’s saving grace for me is the drink pop ups. I love that all these spaces get transformed into something new for a month. It is like some prolonged alcoholic Cinderella story – except there is no turning into a pumpkin at the end of the night because of the extended opening hours.
One of the winning spaces this year has definitely been the Festival Village and I’m going to give you 5 pointers on why you should go here for you to read quickly before you rush off and obviously try it.
- I have to say my main criteria for enjoying a drink during the Fringe is whether or not I got ripped off buying it. During one of my first times here, I was post show, drinking Strongbow and Black ( a throughly underrated drink combo in my opinion) with a group of pals listening to some great music and still managing to go home after an evening with change from twenty quid. Joyous. For those who are a bit fancier than me (aka most people) who require their cocktail needs provided for and catered to at all time – you have Fizz and Pearl who partnered with Moet & Chandon & Bombay Sapphire with some v snazzy cocktails, table services and those glorious heated lights that make sitting outdoors in Edinburgh a possibility.
- Edinburgh Locals may have been wondering where their fave street food market the Pitt has disappeared to during the Fringe – well it showed up here (also at the Edinburgh Beer pop up) serving up those photogenic halloumi fries and some steak and fries goodness. They also have a Edinburgh Pizza Geek set up in Malones which made for a great end of the night snack. I didn’t try the Butcher Boy but the Burger selection looked like it would satisfy the most dedicated of carnivores.
- Judging from the Hashtag #FestivalVillage, I wasn’t alone in thinking the views from this venue were pretty spectacular – Edinburgh isn’t a UNESCO world heritage site for nothing.
- The Music at the Festival Village has definitely impressed me. Need to be serenaded watching the fireworks blast over the Scott Monument? – Malones have you covered. Had too many of the aforementioned strongbow and black and want a dance? M2 – the name for the bandstand at the back was class everytime I went. They had over 200 local and international bands playing there over the Fringe & the ones I caught were pretty damn good.
- Whilst I can’t recommend turning to alcohol to avoid the road rage that comes with walking behind the slow walkers that seem to live on Princes Street at this time of year -it is perfectly located if you need a respite from those who don’t know that you’re very important and in a hurry. It’s next to the Balmoral on top of Waverley Mall- You cannot miss it. Also means that as it’s slightly away from the madness that is the Old Town it doesn’t seem to be as heaving as other outdoor spaces during the Fringe.
So for those of you who weren’t put off by my Fringe whining and finished this to the end – the takeaway from this should be I really liked the Festival Village – a solid place to eat, drink, people watch and be merry – which is all I ask for of the Festival.