Friday, 26 June 2015


6 Dean Park St
Open: Mon-Sat
Coffee: Mr Eion bespoke blend
Also: Cold drinks, cakes, beans
Coolness: High end bicycles, accessories, repairs and expertise

Gamma Transport Division (4♥) is a bicycle shop for the serious cyclist and provides equally high level servicing and expertise. They also supply excellent coffee and use their walls as an art exhibition space.

Gamma has the enviable position of living across the road from local coffee roaster Mr Eion. Gavin, the shop's owner, has worked with Mr Eion to create a Gamma coffee blend and offers espresso-based coffees as well as a range of Mr Eion retail bags of beans. While Gavin won't give away his secret recipe, the Gamma house blend includes Indian Tiger Stripes and Brasil Daterra Sunrise among others and is big and rich.

You place your order at the counter and a delightful coffee will be brought to you at the high bench seating in the front shop window.

On the bicycle front, enthusiasts can expect some serious gear. The large, light-filled room is jammed with bikes and related paraphernalia that will tempt most into considering the pastime if they're not already addicted. Gamma also pffer a custom-build service to create the bike that's perfect for you.

This is a nice spot to drop by for a brew and, if you're a cyclist, well worth putting on your route.


Saturday, 20 June 2015


101 Hanover St
Open every day
Coffee: Artisan Roast
Also: Full meals, beans, Frank Green cups
Coolness: Friendly, cosy with a light and airy feeling

Papii (4♥) in the New Town has a welcoming crisp white frontage and almost summery feel inside with friendly, friendly staff.

They offer wholesome and substantial breakfasts, brunches, soups, sandwiches, pastries, scones and much more. This is one of the New Town's best places to go if you want good coffee and a full cooked breakfast or lunch.

It's relatively small with mostly white tables and chairs of various shapes and sizes and counters against both front windows so you can sit on stools to watch the world go by. They're kid-friendly with baby changing facilities in the loo.

They're very proud of their Kees Van Der Westen Mirage lever coffee machine - for those who are fond of this level of geekery - and make lovely coffee.

More: Facebook

Monday, 15 June 2015

Twelve Triangles

90 Brunswick St
Open every day
Coffee: Steampunk
Also: Doughnuts, cake, breads
Coolness: Amazing filled doughnuts

Twelve Triangles (4♥) is a cosy little bakery cafe just off Leith Walk on residential Brunswick Street. It has a handful of tables and chairs, dark blue panelled walls topped with high, ornate white ceilings and a serene shade of 60's green crockery.

When we visited, the friendly hosts explained that North Berwick-based Steampunk coffee was on offer. We tried a delightful flat white - a full-flavoured Tanzanian that had enough fruity twang to nicely offset the sweet creaminess of the famous Twelve Triangles doughnuts. This will make more sense when you read on.

The owners of this coffee shop are local cake and bake heroes and also run Lovecrumbs in West Port. These people are artisans and you'll have the opportunity to feast on croissants, loaves, focaccias, brownies and more, but the filled doughnut is quite rightfully their pride and joy.

But don't go thinking we're talking 'just' jam doughnuts - much as these are some of the finest jam doughnuts you'll find. We're talking soft, squishy, fresh, sugar-covered pillows of joy, bursting with the likes of maple pecan custard, chocolate peanut butter, poppyseed custard, orange and cardamom, chocolate custard, passionfruit ricotta and apple cinnamon. They may not all be available when you visit, but you get the idea.

This is a hedonist's haven!


Saturday, 6 June 2015


66 Hamilton Pl
Open every day
Coffee: Steampunk Coffee
Also: Soups, pastries, bikes and gear
Coolness: Beautiful bicycles and related accessories

Ronde (4♥) is mostly a funky bicycle shop with slick, smart and intelligently designed bicycles and bicycle gear. But it's also a cafe and an art gallery dedicated to showing cycling-related photography and print. Their focus is on 'cycle, cafe and culture'.

Ronde occupies two shop fronts with the cafe in the front of what was previously a butchers, complete with lovely old tiling. You can take a seat at one of handful of cute vintage 50s-ish tables and have coffee and sweet, cake type things. They also offer great soups.

The space has been furnished and designed thoughtfully and contains lots of really nice goods that you'd like to take home.

They make a very fine coffee and are friendly people. Soft milk, not too hot, rounded flavours. A joy to visit.


Saturday, 30 May 2015


6-8 Alexander Dr
EH11 2RH
Open: Tues-Sun
Espresso, V60
Coffee: Charlie Mills
Also: Light meals, cakes, V60s & filters
Free wifi
Coolness: Hand-made home furnishings, bags, cards & jewellery

Greenshoots (4♥) is just off Gorgie Road in South West Edinburgh and is a very nice spot indeed. By 'nice' we mean thoughtful, friendly, passionate, carefully curated and artisanal.

Talking about the coffee first... Greenshoots offers espresso and pour over using Glasgow-based Charlie Mills beans to suit, delivered in the roaster's charmingly retro blue cups. We very much enjoyed our flat whites and trying a new (to us) roaster. The barista brought out the chocolatey caramel fullness of the Charlie Mills' signature 'Tip-Top' espresso blend, which finishes with a light citrusy flavour but doesn't jar with the well-stretched milk. Greenshoots also had two bean choices for pour-over. Altogether a very pleasureable coffee experience.

On the food front you can expect a changing menu of cakes/scones and creative light meals, including quiches and sandwiches, using high quality produce and local suppliers. In keeping with everything else, the food is interesting and well-made.

And then there's the rest of the shop which is also a delight (and quite large). Owner Lynn and manager Rebecca (pictured) present you with a wide range of hand-made goods, some of which have been specifically commissioned, from artists and artisans. You'll find cushions, hand bags, gift cards, clothing, crockery, jewellery, soaps and soft furnishings. The more you look, the more you find and a browse is highly recommended.

Greenshoots is a lovely spot that we're really hoping will continue to do well. It is also another example of Edinburgh's coffee love expanding beyond the city centre which is a great sign!

More info:

Monday, 25 May 2015

Urban Angel

121 Hanover St
Open every day
Espresso, Aeropress
Coffee: Alchemy, Caravan
Also: Full meals, cakes, beans
Coolness: Ethically sourced, great tasting produce

Urban Angel (4♥) is completely committed to sourcing excellent produce, a principle they apply to their coffee as well as the rest of their menu. They alternate between London-based Alchemy and Caravan roasteries and offer espresso based coffee as well as aeropress, both expertly prepared.

Located in the heart of the New Town, Urban Angel seems small from the street but looks deceive. You'll be greeted by friendly staff at the front counter and, if you want to eat in, be led out the back to a much larger space. They're also very happy to provide a take-away service.

Should you choose, you can have your excellent coffee with a wide range of locally sourced, organic, seasonal, fair trade ingredients in the form of very tempting brunches, lunches and cakes. Coffee lovers and foodies alike should definitely visit to savour excellent Scottish produce, expertly and creatively prepared.


Friday, 15 May 2015


38 Clerk St
Open every day
Espresso, Aeropress
Coffee: Has Bean, Square Mile
Also: Light meals, cakes
Coolness: Aeropress Championships poster collection meets reclaimed timber

Filament (5♥) is located in Edinburgh's bustling South Side, just beyond the Old Town.

They use seasonal beans from highly acclaimed English Has Bean and Square Mile roasters, tailored for your chosen brew method. Their collection of Aeropress Championship posters makes clear their passion for this style of coffee.

The coffee shop has a light industrial feel, held together with tubular steel and using reclaimed timber for seating and tables. This is softened by bright white walls and warm, hanging light bulbs that play on their filament theme. Friendly staff welcome you to bench seating toward the front of the shop and tables and chairs toward the back.

By way of food you can expect locally sourced, high quality sweet baked goods such as peanut butter brownies and strawberry cheesecake shortbread along with fresh bagels and bread rolls. They also whizz up their own juices.

Definitely a coffee highlight for this area and Edinburgh.