Interior

Interior

Rather strangely, I’ve never written a review of Artisan Roast, previously, mainly because I only ever drink coffee there rather than eating. I should rectify that at some stage, not least because they do stock Union of Genius soup.

When the world of social media alerted me to the arrival of their Holy Garage pop-up in a mysterious location just near George Square, I made a note to visit at my earliest opportunity.

Menu board

Menu board

The site brings together a number of elements, with their signature coffee, Barney’s beer, Twelve Triangles‘ doughnuts, an absinthe bar, a shipping container cinema, and a bar area within the garage space itself.

I visited first for a quick espresso in a break in my wanderings around the city, so I could temporarily take the weight of my action footwear-clad feet.

I sampled their Kenyan peaberry espresso, which was bright, fruity and absolutely first class.

After popping over to Summerhall, I came back to spend part of the evening there with, amongst others Hannah, with whom I will be walking a long charity walk soon, and our founder and inspiration MJ, who had been at King’s to see Juliet Binoche in Antigone.

During that visit I did something I rarely do: I had a milky coffee. I was convinced this was an idea by the excellent barista as they’re using different blends for the black and white coffee. The flat white was a much more savoury blend, with a real peanut saltiness to the overall effect. It was quite spectacular.

Absinthe bar

Absinthe bar

We sipped tasty beer, basked in some quirky tunes, and generally had a lovely evening sitting in the main garage space.

So overall, while we have some great coffee pop-ups this Festival the Holy Garage is a cut above. I’ve rarely been so impressed with the whole look, feel and quality of a temporary place. It’s an absolute must visit. Try to do so early in the day so you get to sample a doughnut or two, but once they’re done there’s still so much fun to be had. Superb.

5 stars 2

Written by BKR