Café No 9 - New Edinburgh café off Leith Walk steps out usual gay hub
‘I think people are a bit sick of big chains and their coffee is a bit rubbish sometimes too . . .’
For a new LGBT café owner in Edinburgh, straying away from the pink-tinged pavements of Broughton Street may be a bold move, but one which Innes Drummond believes is necessary.
Drummond’s venture Café No 9 recently opened in Croall Place off Leith Walk. Having previously run a guesthouse with her partner for ten years, she saw a gap in the market for a new fuel stop outwith Edinburgh’s usual gay hub.
‘Blue Moon and all those places have been on Broughton Street for what feels like forever,’ she says. ‘I lived around there for years but it’s nice to have something in Leith for a change.’
The café, which opened just over a month ago, is already starting to attract a healthy clientele due to its wholesome menu and relaxed vibe, with an array of homely breakfasts, lunches and a No 9 fish special on offer every day. Avoiding the hipster clichés (note to Ilene Chakin, creator of The L Word’s café queen Kit Porter: your fictional lez-caf was nice, but it would take more than rice cakes and luke warm mochas to keep [lead actress] Katherine Moennig going in real life, I should coco), Drummond’s bright and welcoming café is more comfy chic than corporate coffee joint.
‘What we’re doing is a bit more personal than chain places,’ says Drummond, who has lived in Leith for 15 years. ‘I think people are a bit sick of big chains and their coffee is a bit rubbish sometimes too …’
With word of mouth fast putting Café No 9 on the local grub map, Drummond is still keen not to get typecast.
‘It’s not just a “gay” café – we want it to be somewhere for people in Leith to be able to come and feel at home. It’s a real mixed bag.’
Maybe time to wander off the beaten Broughton track …
Café No 9 is open Mon–Fri 8am–4pm; Sat/Sun 9am–5pm.