5 of Edinburgh's best coffee shops for you to check out

We've highlighted some of the best coffee shops to grab an early morning - or anytime of day - cup of Joe in the capital

Published 1st Oct 2015
Updated 12 th Sep 2023
It's the best way to start the day, so why not enjoy a cup of coffee with some of Edinburgh's best coffee shops?
(104 Buccleuch St, EH8 9NG)
Cult Espresso

Cult Espresso

Situated on the South side of Old Town, this is not only a fantastic little coffee shop but it's also close enough to Edinburgh University to make it a great hide away not only for students, but also those craving a full flavoured, caffeine kick.

Cult uses Round Hill Roastery beans, as well as a few other guest coffees, to create their almost perfect brew and are always looking to source the best ingredients for their coffee.

The store looks quite small from the outside, but there's plenty of seating in the long and narrow building, should you wish to while away a few hours on a cold autumn afternoon. Sandwiches, salads, soups and cakes are also on offer, as well as the occasional doughnut pop up shop, in partnership with - the excellent, and well worth checking out - Jane Dough.

(41a Frederick St, Edinburgh, EH2 1EP)
Cairngorm Coffee

Cairngorm Coffee

This is one shop that takes all the pretentiousness out of independent coffee. Situated in the heart of Edinburgh, Cairngorm uses beans from local roaster Mr Eion, and has developed their own Cairngorm Blend.

On top of that, the shop offers free WiFi and a couple of built in iPads for customers to enjoy during their visit - also free of charge.

As well as the freshly baked snacks and light lunches on offer, you can also pick up a few accessories for those who are budding at home baristas.

(57 Broughton St, Edinburgh)
Artisan Roast

Artisan Roast

The exposed brick work, wooden furnishings and Hessian coffee sacks that make up the interior design of this unique coffee shop is effortlessly cool and thankfully the substance more than matches the style.

Using their own gourmet roasted blends - with a choice of around ten - Artisan Roast are well versed on the best brew methods for your choice drink.

Interestingly, not only do they offer beans for you to take home to make your own brew at home but they also have an online subscription service to ensure you never run out of your favourite coffee.

(3c York Place, Edinburgh)
Fortitude Coffee

Fortitude Coffee

Comfortably situated between the National Portrait Gallery and The Stand Comedy Club in the New Town, Fortitude is all white walls and wooden chic.

Enjoy a selection of excellent coffees (as well as loose leaf teas, hot chocolate and gourmet cold drinks) and partner them up with a side of stromboli, soup, salad, chilli, quiche and cakes.

Enjoy the free WiFi in a dog friendly atmosphere, and if the fancy takes you, buy some of their seasonal blends to use at home.

(Marchmont Crescent, Edinburgh)
Cobolt Coffee

Cobolt Coffee

Good things come from inside blue police boxes (Dr Who fans will attest to that) and this tiny coffee shop, which makes use of the disused Police Box in Marchmont Crescent, is no exception.

Using Falkirk-based Roast Central beans to create great brews, the seasonal and small-batch beans they buy in insure a wonderful, fresh taste with every cup.

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They also offer some light snacks and being so close to the Meadows, they make for a good stop off on a walk around the park.

Emma lives in Fife, after graduating from the University of Sunderland in 2015, and works for The Scotsman. A self-confessed food addict, who is yet to turn down a drink, she loves exploring new restaurants – especially if they have good steak or BBQ on the menu. She likes to pretend she can bake – bookmarking hundreds of recipes - but has never really achieved anything other than a good chocolate orange cupcake.
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