Last weekend, during the festival, Ross and I had a lovely day in the Capital. We indulged in a little retail therapy, had a walk through the beautiful gardens and went for lunch at a small coffee house in George Street, Caffe Centro (38 George Street, EH2 2DW/0131 2253419).
As much as I love a posh coffee and cake from Starbucks, it was nice to have a change from the usual high street chains and try something a little different. That’s the beauty of Edinburgh, there’s so many unique and independent cafes and bistros to choose from, that you never have to visit the same place twice. This tiny Italian cafe can be found sitting snugly amongst the hustle and bustle of George Street. We decided to sit outside in the small front terrace open for festival visitors. Service was quick and very efficient despite all seating areas being absolutely packed.
As a vegetarian, I often find there is only a handful of dishes to choose from but I was presently surprised by the variety of meals available, such as the Florentina Gnocchi (blue cheese, spinach and parmesan), and Caprino Panini (goats cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, marinated aubergines and roasted peppers). After much deliberation, I ordered the Al Mascarpone, a rich risotto made with mascarpone cheese, mushrooms, parmesan and cream (£8.95).
Risotto is something that never really looks that appetising in photographs but believe me it was delicious! It was cooked to perfection and the portion size was really generous. It was rich, creamy and packed full of flavour but not stodgy and thick, like others I’ve had in the past that tend to sit in your stomach hours later.
Ross went for the Rio Mare seafood pizza with tomato, mozzarella, prawns, tuna, mussels, smoked salmon, capers & anchovies (£8.95). Which he devoured with great satisfaction. The menu contains a large selection of antipasti, seafood, pasta, pizzas, steak and lighter options such as paninis, salads and soups, as well as breakfast options and a mouth-watering selection of desserts and pastries.
Caffe Centro is a lovely, reasonably priced gem of a cafe that is perfect if you’re looking for a quick spot of lunch whilst out shopping. Due to its popularity and the festival crowds, it’s not the most relaxed meal I’ve ever had. We felt a bit rushed considering the price we were paying. However neither of us could fault the food and we will definitely be returning, but perhaps at a quieter time during the week.
What are your favourite cafes & restaurants in Edinburgh?
I’d love some suggestions for my next visit.
Have you ever visited Caffe Centro?
Did you go to The Fringe this year?