Monday 30 July 2018

Pumpkin Brown

16 Grassmarket
Open every day
Coffee: Machina
Also: Salads, cakes
Coolness: A vegan safe house in the burger-loving Old Town

Pumpkin Brown (3♥) is in the Grassmarket - one of the Old Town's most tourist-frequented sites. And rightly so given the large open space has been operating as a market place since the 1400s and the historic surrounds, overshadowed by Edinburgh Castle, are pretty eye-popping.

Pumpkin Brown uses local roaster Machina and has specifically chosen a zingy, punchy coffee profile to ensure it works with all of their range of non-milks  - oat, soya and coconut - as well as black of course. Lovers of cow milk should expect something quite different from their usual latte or flat white. That said, the coffee's fruitiness still comes through.

Food is a major part of their vibe - offering a complete contrast to their fish & chip, burgers and pizza-touting neighbours (not that there's anything wrong with that). Everything on the menu is gluten free, dairy free and free from refined sugars.

Sourcing from a load of local suppliers, you'll find creative boxed up salads, each with a mix of vegan, gluten-free ingredients such as quinoa, rice, lentils, jerk jackfruit, fruity salsas and slaws to name but a few - as well as soup, quiche and a hot dish of the day on rice. The breakfast menu has multi-grain porridge with a bunch of toppings from compotes, to nut butter, maple syrup to pumpkin seeds, acai bowls, granola, chia pots and bircher.

Cakes are all raw - made from mixed seeds, nuts, oats and cashew cream - as well as the essential ingredients to make them look and taste like millionaire's shortbread, chocolate & orange cheesecake, apple crumble slice, lime & matcha slice etc. The cold drinks selection is also wide and varied including kombucha teas and other sparkling soft drinks. Check out Pumpkin Brown's instagram feed and you'll see how much of a whole food treat you're in for.

While this shop looks small from the outside, there's a fair amount of space inside with high benches and stools for dining in. All the food is packaged and ready to go, however, so you can take-away and sit out in the Grassmarket and soak up the atmos.


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