Café Culture


Edinburgh is dominated by the big coffee chains – Starbucks, Costa, Nero.  It’s boring.  There are a few great coffee companies like Wellington Coffee and Artisan Roast.  They’re good places to grab a perfect flat white, chat with the friendly baristas and go on your way with a little more pep in your step.  I love Wellington’s coffee – it’s delicious and the staff is so friendly and really knowledgable when it comes to explaining what you’re drinking.  But it isn’t a great place to hang out as it’s tiny.  On a sunny day you can grab a seat outside and it’s a great place to watch Edinburgh rush by.  The problem comes when you just want to hang out in a coffee shop that isn’t highly branded and generic feeling.

Well, that is changing.  I’ve completely fallen for Leo’s Beanery.  Some friends told us about it and I went there last week and quickly returned three times!  It’s that good.  Friendly service, great atmosphere, delicious food.  I’ll get around to taking some pictures soon and posting them.  The decor is so fun as all the furniture was handmade by the owners from salvaged church pews and yew trees. Everything I’ve had there has been perfect and the super friendly server had my drink order memorized by my second visit .  How impressive is that?  Just so you know – it’s not that fussy, just a cappuccino without chocolate on top.  Anyway, it’s a great place and really fills a gap in the New Town.

Today, I discovered another fun coffee shop, Frederick’s.  It’s only been open for a week so it’s still pretty quiet, but the atmosphere is great.  I snapped a few pictures and thought I’d share.

Located on Frederick Street, you get to climb this inviting stairway as you make your way to the shop.

Great window seats

Isn’t it cute?  My latté was delicious and I loved the bright cheerful décor.  It’s located on the west side of Frederick Street between Princes and George Streets.  Definitely a place where I could spend a few happy hours working.  Hopefully with Leo’s and Frederick’s now firmly established in the New Town, the cafe culture will take such a hold that coffee shops will soon be extending their hours past 5PM.  That would be huge progress!

About Rebecca

Hi! After five years in Europe, I'm adjusting to life back in the US. I use this blog to record my adventures, post photos, organize recipes, and post about things that interest me.
This entry was posted in Coffee, Edinburgh, Food, Restaurants and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Café Culture

  1. Alison says:

    I was in Fredericks yesterday! Definitely got potential. Leo’s Beanery is fabulous isn’t it? I must go back for tea and cake to update the review.

    Have you tried Tea Tree Tea for later opening hours? (also does coffee). Cafe Ruby at Tollcross is a delight and Pekoe Tea are opening a tea shop in a week or two, also at Tollcross.

    Just back from American where I really appreciated the longer opening hours, but it’s hard to get us Scots out the pubs to justify longer opening hours ;)

    While I’m at it, please tell me you have experienced Anteaques on South Clerk Street? Review on site

    Enjoy!

    • Rebecca says:

      Hi Alison! Great to see you up here. So funny that we were both in Fredericks – it’s great. The atmosphere and decor are so welcoming, bright, and cheery.

      I will definitely need to keep Tea Tree Tea in mind for later hours. Thanks for the recommendation. I haven’t tried Cafe Ruby but will add it to my list.

      Where were you in America? Hope you had a great time!
      And yes, I have experienced Anteaques – what a great concept. Absolutely loved it. I wrote about it here:
      http://scottybecca.wordpress.com/2010/07/19/british-open-and-expat-observations/

      I’ve been enjoying reading through reviews on your site!

  2. Melanie says:

    Leo’s is my favorite! They also do a really good breakfast. The good news is that I will be moving back in December to come and try out Fred’s.
    I also thought I should tell you that Betty has a cousin called Bluebell and she is coming back too! (Sounds like weird code!?)

    M

  3. realoves says:

    Wish I could join you at any one of those locations for a latte! The intense and vibrant colors amaze me, but then when the skies outside are grey a lot, I suppose it makes sense!

  4. Katie says:

    Wow…what fun, new places. I just got a pang in my stomach wishing I was back in Edinburgh.

  5. Tatiana says:

    What an adorable place to sip coffee!! It looks like a home, is it? I can’t wait to see you in a little more than a week!!!!

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