Coffee: Artisan Roast
Also: Meals, cakes, beans
|Coolness: The charming stone building belies the bakery indulgences within!|
The Loft Cafe & Bakery (4♥) is in a large, listed stone building, tucked away from Haddington's High Street in amongst East Lothian Council's buildings and behind the The Plough Tavern. The locals are certainly enjoying The Loft, so if you have any trouble finding it, just ask someone to point you in the right direction.
The Loft's lead barista Jake does a cracking job at the espresso machine with Edinburgh's Artisan Roast Janszoon beans, their signature Sumatran/Brazilian blend. It's great to see his passion and focus being appreciated by his regulars and visitors alike with well-extracted (and regularly calibrated) shots brought together with expertly stretched milk. At this stage the Loft is one of Scotland's 'coffee oases' - in that you'll need to go a long way in any direction before you'll find coffee as good as The Loft's!
Coffee lovers can also buy take-home bags of Artisan Roast beans and aeropress machines. Jake has hopes to be able to offer more brewing equipment soon, as well as potentially offering filter coffee. Pekoe Teas are on the menu and a range of Coco, Ailey Mae and Chocolate Tree hot chocolates, which we were impressed with.
The food is equally enjoyable with a variety of gourmand preserves, oils, smoked fish, free range eggs and more. Breakfasts on the menu - available until 11.30am - include bacon and egg rolls, scrambled eggs, pancakes and granola. Lunches are wide and varied including mezze plates, toasties, sausage rolls, quiches, ploughman's, pulled pork rolls, smoked fish pate with soda bread, home-made soups and inventive salads.
The hint's in the name of this establishment that breads and cakes are a major feature. They source their ingredients locally including bread from Dunbar Bakery (who use no artificial ingredients) and Khleb Bakery in Pencaitland for stone-baked sourdough breads. All their own baking and cooking uses Mungoswells flour which is made entirely from wheat grown on their farm in East Lothian. All manner of sweet treats also await you such as brownies, tartlets, traybakes and cake, laid out on the front bench for you to choose from.
As well as the large and spacious upstairs dining area, spread over an L-shaped space and furnished with light timber tables, chairs and the occasional sofa, The Loft also has a sheltered courtyard with outdoor seating. Due to their popularity, owners Charlotte and Anita, have also installed a take-away shop downstairs for coffee, cold drinks, sandwiches and other goodies for those on the move.