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Forest Café

Restaurants, Vegetarian Tollcross
3 out of 5 stars

The opening times elsewhere on this site, say the Forest, are subject to the presence of enough volunteers to staff the place, and there’s the beauty and the drawback to the place in one statement. As an arts hub, a café and a community centre in one, it’s like nowhere else in Edinburgh; formerly located on West Port and Bristo Place, and now employing its distinctive brand of bohemian café culture – including music, arts and literary events – it occupies a bright space right on Tollcross.

Frequented by hippies and hipsters alike, no-one can hope to have a grasp on Edinburgh’s counter-cultural life until they’ve visited this aesthetically calming jumble of a place and soaked up its unique atmosphere. As a café it’s also definitely worthy of consideration, particularly as it’s one of the few places in the city serving exclusively vegetarian meals, with vegan options also available.

Dishes include the Forest’s own-recipe burrito, freshly-made soup and salads, and a falafel-based plate, with snacks like nachos and hummus and pitta also on the menu. Portions are generally heaped and hearty, although the welcoming and inclusive volunteer-run ethos of the place means you take the rough with the smooth if, for example, one day’s cook isn’t as good as the last or there’s a wait while it’s busy.


Venue name: Forest Café
Address: 141 Lauriston Place
Opening hours: Mon-Sun 10am-11pm
Static map showing venue location