UK Nacho Review - The Library Bar, Edinburgh!


It was a glorious, sunny day in Scotland, which, if you've never been there, is about as rare as a rainy summer day in Texas, and I was out enjoying the sunshine. The day began with sampling some local beers at Summerhall, site of the former Veterinary School of Edinburgh. For any male teenagers reading this blog, as well as the easily amused (including myself), the full name of the school is the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies in Edinburgh. The school has been moved but, thankfully, as with most old timey things here in the UK, the pub remains. The pub, of course, is named simply, The Royal Dick. Which I never got tired of saying.

After downing several beers in the sun, it was time for nourishment. After deciding that everyone at the beer festival was being a Royal Dick (getting into the spirit now, aren't you), I wandered off in search of some sustenance. One of the closest places was the student union of the University of Edinburgh, which houses the Library Bar. This is another of the timeless jokes of bars near colleges naming themselves "The Library".


There's another Library Bar in Austin  so the students can say to their parents, "Can't talk to you mom and dad, I'm headed to the library" but what they really mean is "I'm headed out to this ironically named bar called the library that makes you think I'm studying but I'm really going to get blotto and make out with some dude/chick from Estonia."


Sadly enough, the Library Bar in Austin exists in the same space on 6th Street as a club called Steamboat. A few of the people you might have heard of who performed at Steamboat included Stevie Ray Vaughan, The Butthole Surfers,  Sam Kinison and Bill Hicks.


After consulting the menu, I ascertained that nachos were, in fact, present. Not only were they present but, the menu assured me, these were the BIGGEST ORDER of nachos available in all of Edinburgh. I know that ordering nachos in the UK can be a dicey proposition (with notable exceptions) so I refrained from ordering the big bowl of nachos and opted instead for the poco (that's "little" to you gringos) size.

The big bowl came first and...just take a gander at the picture in the header above to see what they looked like. I've gotta say they were big. The problem was, however, that a bunch of the chips got mangled on their way into the bowl, resulting in a big bowl of what looked like nacho cereal. The owner was even reduced to eating the monstrosity with a fork.

The Little Nachos


My nachos arrived shortly after "The Thing" and I was relieved that it wasn't the Towering Inferno of nachos that I was afraid it was going to be, as you can see there to the right.

However there was still a problem with the nacho preparation which, if you've read any of my earlier posts you can probably see right off the bat - EVERYTHING IS STACKED ON TOP!!

There are two main problems with this nacho approach:

  • I like to sample the salsa. Because, sorry, UK, but 99.5% of the time your salsa sucks and tastes like ketchup. By immediately pouring your sub-standard salsa on the chips, you infect both the chips below the ground zero of salsa and also inflict collateral damage upon the surrounding chips.
  • This makes the chips really soggy. I like to dip the chips into the dips. So by the time I'm eating the chips underneath the dips, they're really nasty. Plus, you guys always go WAY OVERBOARD with the sour cream.

But I'd rather light a candle than curse your darkness. UK, this problem can be easily remedied. Let me introduce you to my friend.....the ramekin.

You're welcome. You can repay me in un-soggy nachos.