A Few of My Favourite Edinburgh Cafes/Coffee Shops!

Edinburgh, UK

If you follow me on Instagram, it should come as no surprise that I can't resist a good cuppa. I think it's part of the fun of exploring, a good wander with the expectation of a warm cuppa and a comfortable seat at the end of it. There's also something lovely about sitting down in a cafe to catch up with an old friend or to make a new one - many of my closest friendships started over a cuppa and a good natter. So, today I'm going to note down a few of my favourite Edinburgh cafes. So, in no particular order let's begin!

1. Strumpets / 35 William St

I'm forever grateful to James (@ajmerron_docs) for introducing me to this gem of a coffee shop situated on quaint William Street in the West End. The shop is light and bright yet very cosy, and their staff couldn't be lovelier. Also, don't worry if you're with your beloved four-legged friend, dogs are very welcome and often cause much excitement! With regards to their hot drinks, I can only vouch for their extremely good tea (which is supplied by Glasgow-based tea company Tchai-Ovna) but friends have raved about their coffee too!

Insider's Tip: If you're a book lover, they host a monthly book club in collaboration with the Edinburgh Bookshop!

2. Cult Espresso / 104 Buccleuch Street


Cult Espresso is a particular favourite meeting place for one of my closest friends and I. One day we even spent a whopping five hours there simply catching up - don't worry the cafe wasn't busy. I can't quite put my finger on what I makes me like the coffee shop so much but I think it's a combination of how cosy it feels, their quirky decor, how friendly their staff are, and their range of drinks! Also, look how cute the latte art is!

Insider's Tip: If you do visit, be sure to read the board outside their shop carefully, sometimes they write up their funniest TripAdvisor reviews and it can be quite a hoot! Also, their quiche is amazing.

3. Life Story / 53 London Street

Next up on the list is a charming shop called Life Story. Life Story is a haven for Scandi lovers and you'll find a beautifully curated range of homewares, jewellery, accessories, and books. I love spending time browsing through the shop and have a chat with its equally lovely owner Susan. However, my favourite aspect of the shop is the tiny seating area tucked away at the back where you can order a coffee, tea, matcha latte, and/or a sweet treat!

Insider's Tip: Whether you're a seasoned Matcha Latte drinker or not, Life Story (in my humble opinion) has the best Matcha Lattes in Edinburgh!

4. Cafe Milk - Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop / 21 Hawthornvale

I like to think Cafe Milk at the Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop is a bit of a hidden gem! I admit it's a bit of a distance from the city centre but there are so many lovely things to do in Newhaven that if you can make a day of it, you should! I first discovered the hidden cafe on a university field trip but it wasn't until a friend and I rediscovered it, that I really appreciated what a gorgeous space it is. They serve a range of hot drinks as well as things to eat. My favourite thing about it is the view from their window onto The ESW courtyard, which if you're fortunate will have an exhibition set up when you visit.

Insider's Tip: If you do visit Cafe Milk, be sure to wander around Newhaven, visiting its quaint cottages and it's lighthouse!

5. Press Coffee / 30 Buccleuch Street

Press Coffee was an old haunt of mine during my time at university and I'll always think fondly of it! It's the perfect place to head on a gloomy (or dreich) day as their walls are bright yellow and they have lovely big windows - perfect for people watching! Whether you're there for a cuppa, brunch or lunch, Press Coffee have it covered. For some reason, I haven't been very often recently which I need to rectify soon!

Insider's Tip: If you're there for brunch, I'd recommend ordering their potato and Jarlsberg hash, asparagus, poached eggs with beetroot chutney (there's also an option with bacon) - it's delicious!

6. Leo's Beanery / 23A Howe Street

There's something about Leo's Beanery that radiates warmth and cosiness! I love ordering one of their award-winning brownies and a hot drink then settling down in a cosy corner and disappearing into a different world as I read my book!

Insider's Tip: If you're visiting in the colder months be sure to try their hot chocolate! Each cup of hot chocolate comes with a circular block of chocolate on a spoon, which melts when dipped into the hot foamed milk.

7. The Pastry Section / 86 Raeburn Place

I debated whether to include The Pastry Section as I'm not entirely sure whether it falls into the category of a cafe or coffee shop but in the end my love for the business and it's amazingly talented and sweet owner Lesley prevailed! Located in one of my favourite village-like areas of Edinburgh, Stockbridge, The Pastry Section specialises in delicious, freshly baked sweet treats. They even have great vegan options! As well as delectable treats, they offer a range of great quality hot drinks - I fondly remember their mulled wine tea during the festive period. 

Insider's Tip: Well you absolutely can't go wrong with your choice but my personal favourite are their tarts, which change depending on the season! 


  1. The Pastry Section is my absolute favourite! The best sweets in town and I love the china they serve on. There's also a Milk at the Fruitmarket Gallery, so in another great setting. Will have to give Life Story and Leo's Beanery a try for sure!


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