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“Half and Half - Great idea”
Review of The Haven Cafe

The Haven Cafe
Ranked #14 of 148 Coffee & Tea in Edinburgh
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: British, Cafe, Scottish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Kids, Families with children, Local cuisine
Dining options: Lunch, Breakfast, Brunch, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Highchairs Available, Seating, Street Parking, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Leeds, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
55 reviews
34 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Half and Half - Great idea”
Reviewed January 7, 2013

We came across this little cafe by chance. It's on the outskirts of Leith, near to Newhaven. It was lunchtime on our first visit and although there is a printed small menu there are also 'blackboard' options which change daily. What did impress however was the option to have a half portion of the soup of the day together with a half sandwich of your own choice. Just the job for those who only want a light lunch like us. OK it was busy and we got the last two seats. This had the effect of slightly slower service but on the plus side you do know everything is freshly prepared. The so called half portion of soup was nearly as much as a full portion elsewhere with a really tasty brie and cranberry on wholemeal but help it down. Great value.
We enjoyed the place and decided to have breakfast there the following day and again we were not disappointed. A good start to the day and again it was busy. They must be doing something right but if you want fast food there are other places near the Ocean Terminal.
Just read the Daily Telegraph foodie review on the place which covers breakfast in more detail. It got 8 out of 10 which is much better than many of the establishments reviewed that are supposed to be top notch.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Clark0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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229 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
46 reviews
35 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“A welcome addition to the Leith breakfast scene!”
Reviewed January 6, 2013

After having several disappointments in recent visits to my tried-and-tested Leith breakfast haunts (Mimis, Roseleaf) my boyfriend and I decided to venture down to Newhaven and investigate this place, having heard rave reviews from friends.

We drove down in the car on our way out of Edinburgh for the day and ordered breakfast rolls and coffee. The menu isn't extensive but covers everything you'd want from a breakfast/lunch spot - rolls, cooked breakfasts, pancakes, soups, sandwiches etc. The cafe itself is only a wee place and can get very busy. The 'dodgy decor' referred to by a previous reviewer has a vintage theme - walls adorned with deco mirrors and framed pictures and mismatched tables and chairs, giving it a sweet homely feel and setting it apart from the greasy spoons that have previously occupated the premises. After placing our order we tucked ourselves away in the corner until it was ready. We both ordered two rolls each and i would agree with one of the previous reviewers in saying it does take a while - however i'm happy to wait for something that is tasty and freshly cooked to order, rather than sitting around in a bain marie ready to be served! The rolls were massive and great value at £1.80 a doubler. The coffee too was lovely, however we too had to wait on this after already receiving our rolls - perhaps the only negative.

All in all a fantastic wee place that does what it does perfectly. Yes, it's no 'restaurant' and shouldn't be compared to places like Castle Terrace etc...but neither should many of the other places listed in this category - the key is investigate before you visit then you know what to expect. It's reputation is well-deserved and we'll definately be back to sample some of the baking, of which we've also heard good things :)

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank JAG312
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
13 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“A great place!”
Reviewed January 6, 2013

We had driven past the Haven a few times and resolved to visit for a mid morning snack. We were not disappointed and managed to squeeze in the last table. A buzzing place with a real community feel. Not at all posh or pretentious, just excellent well good food. After much debate about the wonderful choice we both settled on the special ciabatta of the day which was served with homemade coleslaw and some dressed leaves. We then ordered a slice of home made cake which was brought with an extra plate so we could share. Service quick and efficient despite the lace being packed.
We look forward to returning next time we are in Edinburgh.

  • Visited January 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank HawksheadCumbria
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
70 reviews
62 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
“Does well - Despite........”
Reviewed December 30, 2012 via mobile

When we visited in November the Haven was in the top 5 rubbing shoulders with the likes of Castle Terrace and there really is no comparison - Castle Terrace is a Michelin Star restaurant and the Haven is a cafe.
However despite the location, despite the drafts and despite the dodgy decor it does provide all-day breakfasts, scones, soup sandwiches etc and seems to be busy so it must be doing some things right. As long as expectations are realistic then worth a visit if in the neighbourhood otherwise I would travel a bit further as there are many other options in the Leith area.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank EgunRonnie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
30 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“A downfall of its own success?”
Reviewed December 28, 2012 via mobile

*Vist for takeaway only
*very busy
*slow service
*not that cheap for leith

I've only visted this once on a saturday morning and it was for takeaway but I'm in no rush to return.

The service for me was slow after ordering two breakfast rolls and coffees it took about 15 minutes between me walking in getting served and leaving. The place was very busy and it made me late for a meeting.

A single roll was 1.50 where a double was 1.80 so I opted for the double. The rolls were made fresh hence some of the delay but even after I got my rolls I then had to wait for the coffee.

While you wait your asked to locate yourself in a little corner between the bar and the window. Space is at a premium here.

In summary
I think after the great reviews everyone wants to try it, they just have the space but are trying to accommodate without turning people away.
I hope it works out for them, I'll give it sometime and try again later.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank le1ther
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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