The Last Drop
In almost any other city calling a pub The Last Drop would be a reference to the last drop of beer in your glass. Not in Edinburgh. Here the pub name The Last Drop is actually a wonderfully dark play on words.
The significance of the pub's name is a result of its location. So where is The Last Drop? Well it's in the Grassmarket area of Edinburgh, just to the South of the Royal Mile. The area was originally tenement housing but was rebuilt using the original 17th century stone. Today The Last Drop is a Nicholson's pub.
Grassmarket was the site for one of several sets of gallows in old Edinburgh and many people were hanged there including Covenanters and Half Hanged Maggie. During the 18th century in particular these hangings were a popular form of public entertainment and crowds would come to watch. Some people even brought their children and a picnic!
To mark the fact there's a noose design picked out in the Grassmarket paving stones near the road. This is most easily visible from higher up - for example from the top of one of the tour buses - and many people, tourists and locals alike, walk past/over it without even noticing.
So there you have it: the name of the pub actually refers to the 'last drop' on the end of the hangman's noose. Which rather puts the problem of working out whose round it is into perspective.
This page last updated: 4-01-2017