What does your favourite Edinburgh coffee shop say about you?

Jokes on you if it’s Soderberg

With pubs and restaurants not being able to serve alcohol and needing to close by 6pm, the chances are that coffee shops have become the new hub of your social life. And we are truly blessed that Edinburgh has so many.

From vibey independents to reliable chains, we really aren’t short of places to go when you really can’t be bothered to study in the library.

So, lean in to the new normal and see what your favourite Edinburgh coffee shop says about you.

Brew Lab

You pretend to love coffee and will joke that anyone that still orders lattes rather than flat whites is basically a child.

However, in reality, you can’t tell your Arabica blends from your Ethiopian origins. And if you’re being really honest with yourself, you just love the half-finished, grungy industrial vibes as well as eyeballing the fit baristas.

In fact, you definitely prioritise ~the vibes~ over actual enjoyment in every aspect of your life. Back in the days when clubbing was a thing (RIP), you’d pretend to love all things techno when you actually love nothing more than pop tunes and Hive.

Black Medicine

The classic. You like what you know and know what you like. But one thing you very much do not like is the “new normal” – mainly because social distancing means the number of seats in Black Med has shrunk. You can’t wait for the days when this is all over and you can be back squished into vibe-y wooden benches with random strangers.

You are can always be counted on and have the right balance between wholesome and extra and your life mantra is “Live, laugh, vibes x.” You are definitely the type of person that your friends would ask to drop shopping off to them whilst self-isolating. You’d even throw in a little extra treat (just like the ginger biscuit you get with every coffee in Black Med).


I have one word for you and that is “basic.”

Wellington Coffee

Your defining personality trait is that you live in New Town. You exclusively shop at the Margiotta on Dundas Street (that you affectionately call The Marge) and you couldn’t imagine living anywhere else.

There’s a 99 per cent chance you went to boarding school and your husky ‘yah’ voice makes you sound like you smoke at least a pack a day. Well, you definitely smoke the occasional rollie at Wellington – how else can you tolerate sitting outside in the Baltic Edi weather?

Your fashion sense can be described as “geography teacher/roadman on the top half and cord, tweed, or flares on the bottom half.” It’s a good job you’ve got that North Face puffer jacket because you’ve spent every weekend since the pubs closed outside St Vincent’s at the bottom of Howe Street drinking “takeaway” pints.

Victor Hugo’s

It’s maybe more of a deli than a coffee shop but an Edinburgh institution that needs to be on this list.

If Victor Hugo’s is your go-to spot, chances are you ooze sophistication – but in a way that is subtle and not pretentious. You have peak Zara girl vibes and the decor in your flat is classy af.

Your one talent in life is finding fancy stuff on a budget. Yes you may shop at Lidl or Aldi but you know how to pick out a bottle of wine that doesn’t taste like vinegar whilst you’re there.

You spend your weekends walking round galleries and museums and actually know what you’re talking about when you discuss art.

In short, you have truly immaculate vibes.

New Amphion

Ah, Teev – the old faithful. If you love Amphion, you are a pretty typical student. After all, it’s the only place that won’t mind you eating your packed lunch or Gregg’s sneakily in the corner. Where else is it socially acceptable to eat nachos whilst writing an essay?

Before the pandemic hit, you loved nothing more than pre-ing in Library Bar or Spoons before heading out for some cheesy tunes. You live for the three for £10 VK at Big Cheese and are a strawpedo pro. Hive til Five used to be the highlight of your year, and you know exactly when they have a 5am license.

Redbox Marchmont

You live in Marchmont, and that’s pretty much the only thing anyone needs to know about you. At the end of first year, when everyone was scrambling around trying to find flats, you had just one request: to be able to walk to uni through the Meadows everyday.

You really don’t mind the eye-watering prices for brunch foods. Because why would you when you get such a generous allowance from mummy and daddy who also pay for the bedroom in your boujee Marchmont flat that’s bigger than most people’s houses?

Pre-rona, you were the kind of person that would rock up to the Marchmont Road Sainsbury’s before a pres and buy one of the ultra spenny bottles of spirits or fizz from behind the counter. You’d then spend the next morning hungover as hell in Redbox with your pals dissecting the night’s events and discussing the sheer embarrassment having to do the walk of shame through The Meadows.


You sussed out the first free month of the coffee subscription in the first week of uni and now practically live in Pret. You’ve signed up at least four times now with different emails just to get another free month and cancel before the £20 fee kicks in.

Initially, you were so smug that you’d found the deal of the millennium but now bitch about how you can never get a seat. You have a little route of all the Prets in Edinburgh to try and find a seat but almost always end up in the dingy basement of the Princes Street one. Good job you’ve got all that caffeine to keep you going.

You know the exact time M&S and Waitrose put out all their yellow sticker discounts in the evening and leave Pret each day at the exact time to grab these bargains.


You like to think you are ~edgy~but are just as basic as everyone else. After all, you may think Cult is a hidden gem, but literally everyone knows it’s there.

When friends visit you at uni, you love to show them “the real Edinburgh” and all the hidden spots you think no one else knows about. However, there is nothing hidden about Dean Village or hipster pubs in Leith.

You are definitely in a band (and probably play something a bit rogue like bass or saxophone) and love to stomp around the stage in your Docs. There’s a 99 per cent chance you have a nose ring. Bonus points if you’ve also got neon coloured hair.

However, you are always up for a good time and can outdrink almost all of your friends. Pre-pandemic, Trash Tuesdays was your favourite club night, and you can drink venoms like water.


Let’s be real. If you go to Soderberg, leave all hopes of being vaguely productive at the door.

If you go to the Meadows one, the chances are you will sit outside and bump into every single person you’ve ever met at uni. This is because you are a low-key BNOC: you seemingly know everyone, but that’s just because you’re friendly and sociable rather than actively seeking it out.

If you go to Soderberg Pavilion, you’ve probably made plans for a “group study sesh” with your course pals. However, it will quickly descend into an afternoon of chatting and gossiping – even before your spicy mushroom pizzas have arrived. You are easily distracted and are definitely ~that person~ messaging your course group-chat the day before an essay is due in to ask what the hell is going on.

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