I KEEP THINKING The Black Fox is new every time I walk past it and that I must visit. Having opened towards the end of last summer, it can’t exactly be classed as new, but after a recommendation from my mate and local resident, James, it was time to sample the merchandise for myself.
There seems to have been a few new gastropubs added to the eclectic roster of Leith Walk bars in the past couple of years. Lioness of Leith, V-Deep, Serrano Manchego and, more recently, Leith Depot and The Mouse Trap are primed to cater to the every-increasing student population in the area, and that can only be a positive thing.
On this particular Tuesday night, the bar was indeed ticking over with students, and one rather out-of- place old man nursing a pint as if in protest to this modern, craft-beer punting, burger joint. The menu also features a range of tempting hot dogs, as is the trend in this model of bar these days.
Our server is incredibly friendly and I’m delighted to discover they have one of my favourite beers from Drygate on tap. I swiftly order the old blue burger (£9.65) with a side of onion rings (£3.50). You can see the action happening in the open kitchen and the grub is swiftly served.
Us humans eat with our eyes and this burger certainly had the desired effect. A giant patty smothered with blue cheese on a brioche bun comes accompanied by a homemade-looking ‘slaw, side salad and a giant dear drop of sauce. The beef patty was cooked competently enough and the creamy blue cheese didn’t overpower the tasty cow. The smoky hum from the bacon was a welcome component and I always appreciate a bun that doesn’t crumble to pieces half way through eating, too. The little salad was fresh with a delicious dressing and the accompanying Cajun fries were both crispy and fluffy with a subtle spice as you’d expect.
Sarah went for the classic steak burger (£8.95) which was very much enjoyed. Neatly assembled, this simple offering relies on the quality of the beef, and thankfully that was apparent here. Oozing with gooey cheese and matching sides, this burger went down with fair applause. The prices at The Black Fox are very reasonable, with all options bar one priced at under £10 with chips and so on included.
My only negative would be that both burgers could have benefited from a pinch of seasoning, particularly with the nakedness of the steak burger.
There was an ample amount of positive points to the bounty of burgers on offer at The Black Fox and it will certainly be revisited in the not too distant future. While it wasn’t the best burger I’ve ever munched down, it still wasn’t without its charms and the food and drink on offer certainly represents good value for money that definitely merit a visit.
Address: 17 Albert Square, Leith Walk, Edinburgh, EH7 5HN
Phone: (0131) 553 2268