Say what you like about Scottish cuisine, but if there’s one thing we do incredibly well, it’s comfort food. Whether it’s a big plate of stovies or haggis, neeps and tatties, a lot of Scottish food just feels like a big hug in your mouth. But who does the best comfort food in Edinburgh? For me, there is absolutely no contest: that crown sits squarely on the head of Mums, which can be found on Forrest Road.
This small place has been a firm favourite of mine for years, ever since I first arrived in this city. Let’s face it – give a slightly homesick 18 year old girl a good serving of sausage and mash, and she’ll be yours forever. Even after all these years I still love it, and it’s my go-to restaurant if I ever want some decent, quality, no-nonsense food.
The inside has a kitsch feel to it, with a checkerboard floor, copies of the Beano between the booths and retro pictures on the walls. The music is normally pretty good too, blaring out old rock classics. It’s always busy in here but the friendly staff will always make you feel welcome.
Their menu sports all the comfort food classics – big burgers, mac and cheese, pies and stews – but their speciality is sausage and mash. Don’t believe me? Well, at last count their menu sported SIXTEEN varieties of mashed potato, and in addition to their standard pork and herby sausage found on the menu, they usually have about 4-5 gourmet sausage varieties on the specials board (including a couple of veggie options).
Last visit I opted for the herby sausage (my consistent solid option), a pork and apple sausage, and a beef, tomato and basil boyo. These come with lashings of mashed potato and a gravy of your choice. I was boring and went for the standard mashed potato (why meddle with perfection?!) and a caramelised onion gravy.
The herby sausage is always really good, but I also enjoyed both the pork and apple and the beef and tomato. When you order either 2 or 3 sausages, you have the option to try out several different flavours and I would strongly advise you take that opportunity!
The food at Mums is not only really tasty, it’s really good quality as well. The sausages are made of meat and seasonings, no junk, and a happy coincidence of that means that they are also gluten free. It doesn’t affect me personally (thank goodness) but its always nice to know.
After a plateful of that, I definitely couldn’t fit in a pudding (although the options were tempting…) but I can always find room for a milkshake! Mums have a great selection including Oreo, Crunchie and Gingerbread, but I always go for the Mint Aero. It’s a lovely way to finish off the meal.
If you want something tasty, good quality but without all the pomp, then Mum’s is definitely the place to go. They’ve been going strong since I can remember and they’ll be going for a while yet, that’s for sure.
If you love what they do, you might also want to try their sister restaurant in Bruntsfield, Frontier, for a great slice of American food.
Mums (website) is at 4a Forrest Road, EH1 2QH. It’s just across from the National Museum of Scotland and the 2, 23, 27, 35, 41, 42, 45 and 47 will take you straight there (although to be wary of the one way system, buses going from the city will drop you off the next street over – just get off when you see the museum and you can’t go wrong!).