A Coffee Tasting at Burr and Co: Your new favorite cafe

When I was about 13 years old, I remember telling my mom that I would never like coffee. She laughed and said "Oh, someday you will- I promise." As I went through my teenage years I slowly began to acquire an affinity for caffeine. It started with a shot of espresso in a sugary frapuccino from none other than Starbucks, and soon enough milky iced coffee became my drink of choice (and let's be real- it still is). Now I look forward to my morning cup of plain ol' coffee with milk and sugar, and consider my Bialetti to be my most prized possession.   

I'm no coffee snob, that's for sure. But I'll take a strong cup of excellent coffee over the watered down stuff any day. That's why I was so excited to be invited for a barista experience with the experts at Burr and Co


Located on George Street right in the heart of Edinburgh's most popular shopping area, Burr and Co is the perfect place to sit down and relax after a long day of Christmas present hunting. While the cafe tends to be constantly buzzing- especially on the weekends- there are plenty of seats in its warm and cozy interior. One of the most unique aspects of Burr and Co that I've found is that while it serves high-quality artisan coffee, it's atmosphere is highly unpretentious and welcoming- something many new coffee shops seem to lack.  

Our after-hours experience began with an opportunity to try something called "cupping." Cupping is the process of using your senses to observe and enjoy coffee in its purest form.

Few of us were "experts" on the subject, so Burr and Co's coffee genius and head barista Luke guided us as we tried to understand coffee as more than just a morning energy boost.

Once the hot water was added, we were told to sip on our coffee in spoonfuls as if we were drinking hot soup. Hilarious slurping noises ensued, and we tried to point out the differences between the four different roasts. To give us amateurs an even greater challenge, Luke had us guess which cup matched up to the bag of coffee beans. In the end we were 2 for 4- I'd consider that a success!

After trying our hand at cupping, the moment we had all been waiting for was upon us- it was time to make latte art! As most of us were bloggers and student journalists, we were all incredibly excited to have our Instagram dreams come true- I mean, who doesn't love an adorable design on their latte? 

Luke quickly demonstrated how to steam the milk and pour it to create the heart shape. As you can see from the photo, there's a reason he's head barista!

And as a stark contrast... here's my attempt. And I even managed to make a mess on the table. It's safe to say that I will not be taking over Luke's job anytime soon. 

And finally we were able to taste some brewed coffee! I usually take mine with a little milk and sugar (or sometimes even a pump of caramel) but drinking the coffee black allowed us to truly appreciate its complex flavors.

We were very generously gifted with a bag of Burr and Co's signature George Street Blend, as well as some tablet! It's also worth noting that upon returning from this event I was absolutely wired on coffee- which wasn't the best thing at 9PM on a Wednesday. 

Still, I had such a wonderful experience that I returned to the cafe for a latte and a slice of millionaire's shortbread this past weekend. I was clearly too hungry and eager to take a photo of it, but trust me- the latte art was impeccable and the cake was scrumptious. 

Thank you so much to Luke and the rest of the team at Burr and Co for such a lovely evening! And a shout out to my editor at the Lifestyle section of The Student for passing along the invite to me. 

P.S. I had such a funny moment that evening when about halfway through the night I realized that I was sitting across from Juliet of Ever So Juliet. I love her blog and her Instagram, so it was really strange that we just happened to be at the same event!

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