Edinburgh is a city bustling with speciality coffee, it's a great city to comfortably know you will get a good cup without having to venture too far. It has room to grow and I have no doubt it will as speciality coffee slowly but surely gains ground on the coffeehouse chains and population increases.
As such it is incredibly rare for a cafe to so conclusively be rated the best coffee shop in town. Most baristas in speciality venues will recommend Lowdown for the best quality coffee every single day. While some may have opinions on the space and environment, both positive and negative but for overall cup quality - Lowdown is generally the consensus. While Trip Advisor isn't exactly a reliable source, it is interesting that Lowdown is the highest rated coffee focused cafe on the 'Best Coffee & Tea' list - coming in at number three overall. It seems the public and the industry agree for once.
Personally, I think the interior is wonderful. Lowdown brings a bit of nordic design to a historic medieval city, incredibly understated and functional. The precision that goes into the coffee making is underlined by a completely manual coffee machine, using an EK43 grinder that requires predosing of every single shot and precision latte art.
While most shops tend to fluctuate naturally with the turnover of staff (completely understandable) - Lowdown seems to never be affected and remains consistent.
The quality of beans they serve is phenomenal, typically hosting some of the biggest names in the roasting world. Colona, Gardelli, Friedhats, Koppi and others. These producers are not cheap at all and for the price Lowdown charges - it's consistently a pleasure to visit.
Lowdown Coffee - 40 George St, Edinburgh EH2 2LE