OK, I'm in Edinburgh ATM, and this evening tried the Cafe Royal and the Abbotsford which at the top of my list in the centre as they have the best reviews (I'd just come out of the Castle). The thing is, both were packed out with nowhere to sit so they were no good! I would have tried the Guildford Arms but, according to their website they don't serve food between 3pm and 5:30, and it was about 4:15. I thought the Halfway House was likely to be packed too as its small so didn't try that one. I decided to walk back to my hotel to go the Cloisters, but was a bit worried in case that was too busy as well, and its a long way to walk back to town for somewhere else. In the end I ended up in the Doctors, as it was on the way back to the hotel and it looked ok with a reasonable clientele. I looked up a couple of reviews while I was in there and it came out fairly well. It was ok, but a Taylor Walker pub, which I don't have a problem as such with, but I can get enough of those in London!
So what's the best sort of time to visit these pubs when they're not too busy, baring in mind I usually don't eat when I'm away until the evening. Normally I find pubs pretty empty at that time sp I though it was a bit odd for them to be so busy.
Edited: 3:14 pm, May 14, 2013