Marchmont café with a bright, fresh interior showcasing strong breakfast and brunch choices and appealing dinner menu.
The cool, neutral décor of The Birchwood immediately soothes the soul as you step inside. Happily, it's not a fleeting feeling: a visit to this Marchmont café is a thoroughly chilled affair due to unflappable staff who dot from table to table during peak times without missing a beat. Thanks to a dedicated brunch menu, daytime scran is where The Birchwood comes into its own, but there are plenty of tempting evening options too. The former includes porridge with toasted nuts and berry compote, seedy smoked salmon bagels and stacks of spongy pancakes, while the latter takes influences from further afield by way of a sweet potato and chickpea tagine. For those in search of something lighter, owner Emma Hilder has ensured that the café’s coffee and cake offerings make it a destination in its own right. Home-roasted beans from Edinburgh-based Mr Eion and homebaked slabs of carrot cake at the counter hit the spot every time.
- High point: Sweet presentation and a killer brunch menu
- Low point: Book ahead: gets super busy at weekends
- Notable dish: Breakfast salad with black pudding, bacon and a poached egg
- Provides: Vegetarian options (at least ¼ main courses), Children's portions, Outdoor tables, Free wi-fi
- Music on stereo: Folk and classic 80s
- Capacity: 30
- Largest group: 16
- Open since: August 2015
- Number of wines sold by the glass: 7
- House wine: £15 per bottle