Oink (Edinburgh, Scotland)

Our first full day in Edinburgh was mostly involved in touring Edinburgh Castle (which was quite enjoyable), and then exploring the Royal Mile. The Mile is more than a little touristy (indeed, having multiple street artists performing levitation and mime displays is pretty much the definition of “touristy”). It also has more than a few food options, including an implausibly large number of baked potato restaurants. But as we got towards the eastern end of the mile, the touristy places started getting replaced with some reasonably good pubs and restaurants, and one place jumped out at us: Oink.

The think I love about Oink is the simplicity of the concept. Advertising themselves as “Oink: Delicious Scottish Pig Roasts”, that’s basically their entire menu: they’ve got a delicious roasted whole pig sitting in the window. You basically choose a size (piglet, oink, or grunter), a type of bread (white or wheat), and a type of sauce (sage & onion, apple sauce, chilli relish or haggis), and they assemble a simple shredded roast pork sandwich. About the only other variable you can control is that it’s possible to wheedle the staff into throwing some extra crispy bits of crackling on your sandwich as you desire.

And indeed, it was that simple. Opting for a basic “oink” on wheat bread with chilli relish, extra crackling, with a Bundaberg ginger ale on the side, we got our sandwiches and retired to the nearby park in front of the Scottish Parliament to enjoy our sandwiches. And these were indeed enjoyable sandwiches: soft, tender, and very flavorful shredded pork on a nice, soft bun with a decent chilli sauce. The overall note was still focused on the pork itself, and that’s good, because the pork itself was quite nicely roasted.

So yes, if you are looking for a good lunch in the Royal Mile park of the Old City, Oink is a good option. They do one thing, and they do it well, and that’s your basic roasted pork sandwich. Does what it says on the tin.

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