125 Lothian Road
Tel: 0131 622 7191
Costcutter? Why Costcutter? If you’re gonna review a grubby wee corner shop, why not Scotmid or Nisa? In fact why review them at all – isn’t Edinburgh Uncovered supposed to shun all such chains and corporations? Woah, easy now! Yes. Yes to all your infernal questions. Of course it is. But this isn’t just any old Costcutter we’re talking about here. This is the Costcutter. Our holy saviour, the solution to all our late-night cravings for sausage rolls and Rizlas, condoms and chewing gum. In a city bereft of 24-hour shops, the Costcutter on Lothian Road is a beacon of hope. It doesn’t quite stay open all night, but still long enough to grab the essentials, provided you nip on and don’t stop to take the rubbish out.
Inside this bijou emporium, a world of convenience snacks awaits you, illuminated beneath the gormless glow of the halogen lights. If it’s processed, full of E-numbers and certified not to count towards your five a day, the chances are the Costcutter will stock it. For a premium of course. Just because this filth costs pennies at wholesale doesn’t mean that Costupper are gonna pass on the savings to you, the customer. They’ve already gone out of their way to open past 11pm – what more do you want? As it is, the Costcutter provides something even better than junk food – it brings us banter. Step in there on any given night and you’re sure to trip over a veritable human centipede of drunk students, stoned Aussies and raucous dirties. If you can’t fight, score and pull respectively, you should quit breathing now. When the lights have all gone on in the club and you’re still dancing alone, the Lothian Road Costcutter is your last chance saloon. It is the go-to place for all things forbidden – girls you shouldn’t be keen with, boys you shouldn’t have been with and food you shouldn’t be seen with. The only filth they don’t sell in there is porn, but who needs such works of the flesh when you’ve just met the love of your life, spewing in the crisp aisle?
In Glasgow city centre, they have 24-hour shops on every street, and what’s more, they charge normal prices. In Edinburgh, we have kilt shops on every street and what’s more, they play Coldplay tunes on bagpipes. It has to be said, our west coast cousins have fairly chibbed us in the corner shop stakes. Admittedly, they’ll all succumb to heart disease ten years before us, but that’s a small price to pay for the guilty pleasure of purchasing a Pepperami and a steak bake after midnight.
Try: Tomato & mozzarella slice. £1.29 from the hot plate.
Avoid: Asking how long it’s been sitting there for.
Useless information: According to the website of Edinburgh City Council’s Environmental Health Department, the Costcutter’s food hygiene is rated as ‘Improvement Required’. Perhaps you don’t want to buy that slice after all…