When I first moved to Edinburgh I had prepared a list of cafes I wanted to visit. This was inspired by a research I had done online, plus the time I had spent in the city during my visits, a few months before I officially moved here. One name that appeared in almost every list of must visit coffee shops was “Fortitude”.
After moving into my permanent home I was pleased to learn that Fortitude was in my neighborhood, and I quickly went to pay them a visit. I had ordered a cup of coffee to go, and noticed that they had no vegan pastries. I asked about it and was told that they usually do have them. Though the coffee was good I was still disappointed, and pretty much didn’t come back, unless I was dying for some coffee and couldn’t travel too far for it.
Then, at the beginning of February I saw that Fortitude opened a new shop in Stockbridge. Not only is Stockbridge the loveliest neighborhood in Edinburgh (in my humble opinion), the place also looked absolutely fabulous from the photos that were popping on my social media. I decided to go there and bring my laptop with. This was already early days of Covid, so I was slightly anxious sitting in, but the place had absolutely redeemed itself for me. The space in Stockbridge is quite large, it has a lovely wooden counter when you enter and the most beautiful tiles on the walls. The space is mostly bright with a pastel palette, but there are some darker elements (also its facade is dark blue), which gives it a little more depth and elegance. My oat latte was spot on, and though I can’t remember what else I had, it was some sort of vegan cake and I liked it. A couple of weeks later all coffee shops were shut down for a while.
When Fortitude opened up again, I went for a coffee run in Stockbridge. I got a loyalty card and added it to my favorite cafes list. When The New Town location opened up again as well, I decided to give it another go. I was amazed with what I had overlooked the first time around. The space is extremely cozy and inviting, the walls are covered with coffee merchandize (beans and more), the baristas are super nice. They also offer at least two vegan pastry options at any given time, one of which is chocolate cheap cookies, which are the best cookies in Edinburgh. Other options change slightly daily.
So now I am a frequent visitor to the New Town location, with occasional visits to the Stockbridge location, and I also have their beans for home brewing. I think it’s safe to say that I am now hooked and agree with all those post I have read about Fortitude being a must when you are in Edinburgh.
Note that if you are looking to sit in, the Stockbridge location takes walk ins while the New Town one only has one table at the moment, and it needs to be reserved. Visit daily between 9:00am-4:00pm (New Town is closed between 1:00pm-1:30pm, not sure about Stockbridge).