Edinburgh’s Best Shopping: Cranachan & Crowdie
Scotland is renowned for its unique produce, from shortbread to tablet, haggis to black pudding, the Scottish isles produce some of the most delicious and enjoyed food and drink in the world. Award-winning meat, confectionary, dairy and more, enjoying Scotland’s food and drink is a crucial part of many visitors’ experience. A poll by Visit Britain revealed that 40% of visitors to Scotland bought food and drink to take home with them.
We know just the place!
Whether it’s whisky, shortbread, tablet, honey, jam, Stornoway Black Pudding, haggis, or one of our many other delights, Cranachan & Crowdie is the only place to go. A one stop shop for everything Scottish, this delightful venture in the heart of the Old Town simply needs to be on your Edinburgh ‘to do’ list.
We spoke to co-owner of Cranachan and Crowdie, Beth Edberg, about the inspiration for the shop, what she loves about Scotland and why supporting local producers is at the forefront of her agenda.
Could you tell me a bit about yourself?
My name is Beth Edberg, and together with Fiona McEwan, we own Cranachan and Crowdie. Fiona is Scottish and I am American, originally from Tucson, Arizona. I’ve been in Scotland since 1999 and have dual citizenship. I grew up working in our family retail shop but C&C is the first retail shop I’ve been involved with from the very start.
What was the inspiration for the shop?
We own a self-catering apartment on the Royal Mile and our guests would always ask us where they could get authentic Scottish food and drink. We came up with the idea for Cranachan and Crowdie because 4 years ago we felt there wasn’t really any place in Edinburgh where visitors could be guaranteed that every product was produced in Scotland. There was a gap in the market and Cranachan and Crowdie helps fill it.
How does it feel to be able to support so many local businesses?
We love supporting over 200 small, local producers! Early on, we made the decision not to create our own brand, but focus on our producers by telling their stories to customers. We try to visit producers whenever we can because that adds an extra layer to the story. Visitors to Edinburgh specifically tell us that they want to go home with products made in Scotland and we aim to offer the widest selection.
Could you tell us about 3 things in your shops that would make ideal presents?
We’d like to think that every item would make an idea present, but it all depends on who the gift is for.
Shortbread House of Edinburgh tins are by far the most popular and there are flavours to suit everyone. We have been on a tour of the kitchen and also met the Duchess of Cornwall there following her personal tour. I have a selfie of the two of us if you’d like proof!
Our whisky barrel tasting glass holders are an exclusive range and are popular because they offer an alternative to a bottle of whisky which requires visitors to check their bag. We ship a lot of these outside the UK.
Our range of gifts for dogs is unique on the Royal Mile and an awful lot of people like to take home something special for their pooch. We have handmade dog treats include Haggis, Neeps & Tatties and at this time of the year, Christmas Dinner treats that come in a red Christmas Cracker. We have handmade Harris Tweed collars and leads and coats made with Scottish Borders Tweed. By far, the most popular in our dog range is the wee Poo Bag Holder made with Harris Tweed.
If you were to be given a gift from your own shop, what would you like and why?
I would love someone to come into the shop and make me a food and drink hamper so I can hibernate at home over a long weekend.
What do you love most about Christmas in Edinburgh?
I love seeing lights wrapped around trees in Princes Street Gardens – they remind me of Central Park in New York City.