Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Coffee & Cake: Stag Espresso Dovecot Cafe

A wee post about the equally wee but gorgeous Stag Espresso Dovecot Cafe, which I stumbled across recently on a rare sunny weekend.  It's attached to the Dovecot Studio and Galleries, just off North Bridge which makes it wonderfully convenient to duck in for a coffee, sandwich or cake.  With some delicious sandwiches and homemade soups, Artisan Roast coffee and cakes, it's worth seeking out when you want a break from the bustle of the Old Town (particularly during Festival time).  It's a beautifully light and airy space thanks to full length windows where you can have a quiet moment, catch up on a book or just watch the world go by.  The sandwiches are made fresh to order and are of the solid standards with a twist variety, such as pastrami & brie with wholegrain mustard and lemon & coriander hummus on carrot, tomato & spinach (about £5.50).  The homemade soups are very popular and had sold out by the time we visited (around 3pm).  But let's face it, I was there for the cake and Dovecot Cafe have a small but perfectly formed selection of freshly baked cakes and pastries.

I tried their coffee, walnut and maple syrup cake, a three layered beauty.  The maple sweetness was perfectly balanced against the mild coffee sponge flavour and there were plenty of walnuts added to the mix, adding more delicious contrast. My coffee companion had the snickers caramel shortbread which was possibly even better, the slight salty peanuts with sweet caramel was an amazing combination - why have I never thought to make this?  Other cakey options included carrot and cinnamon, florentines, gluten free chocolate & coconut slice and a selection of  flaky croissants.  My latte was creamy, well textured, with a neat rosetta and served with a smile.  What more could we have asked for?  With delicious cakes, coffee and lovely staff, Stag Espresso is an unexpected gem of a place and given it's hidden location will surprise you with it's quality and prices.  There's always beautiful artwork to look at too - when we visited they were displaying Sophie Cullinan's frankly awesome art installation, 'Worn', which will either surprise and delight you or totally freak you out!

Stag Espresso
Dovecot Cafe/Studio/Galleries
10 Infirmary Street, EH1 1LT
Open weekdays 8am - 5pm, Saturday 10am - 5pm