Scotland is known for many things – whisky, haggis, bagpipes. Ice cream has never exactly made the list, and given the overcast weather here I don’t blame them. But Mary’s Milk Bar changes all of that.
Mary’s Milk Bar is a cosy little vintage space on the Grassmarket that serves up gelato and chocolate made every morning by Mary herself.
Mary was actually trained at the Gelato University in Carpigani, Italy. And yes, that’s genuinely a thing. So even though you’re in Scotland, you’re getting the real deal.
Mary serves up wickedly creative, locally inspired flavours like violet, malted milk, goat’s cheese & honey, and salty licorice. There’s usually one or two golden oldens for the more timid amongst us, however.
She’s also got a whole range of other delights, from hot chocolates to root beer floats, or even…wait for it…hot chocolate floats. There are tons of little variations to discover there, you just have to keep your eyes peeled or ask.
On my last visit, I went for the classic two scoops in a cone.
I got whisky marmalade and pistachio. I love pistachio, and have to get it whenever it’s on the menu. And oh my god the whisky marmalade was so so good. The base was a surprisingly mellow vanilla-y flavour that softened the kick from the slightly spicy chunks of whisky marmalade. If it’s on the menu, this is one flavour you cannot skip.
If you couldn’t tell from the picture, one of the best parts about Mary’s Milk Bar is the view of the castle, particularly from the window seat.
I could honestly spend all day sitting there, day dreaming and people watching.
During the summer, and especially during Fringe, the line to Mary’s Milk Bar regularly wraps around the building and up the close, so it’s well worth checking this place out off season if you can. Even if you do have to stick it out in the queue though, it’s absolutely worth the wait!