Cafe Portrait at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh
Afternoon tea at Cafe Portrait within the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh
Cake and food counter at Cafe Portrait within the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh
Cafe Portrait at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery


Café Portrait
1 Queen Street

Telephone No.

0131 624 6421

Opening Times

Friday to Wednesday 10am - 4.30pm
Thursday 10am-6.30pm
Counter service. Bookings required for Afternoon Tea only from 2:30 pm. Let us know of any dietary requirements


The magnificent building that is the Scottish National Portrait Gallery on Queen Street is a marvel in itself, let alone its collection of world-class paintings and photography. Our ground floor counter-service café here combines sleek contemporary styling with a high church-like ceiling and wonderfully gothic windows. Sit surrounded by light and art or choose a table in the Snug – a smaller area a little more tucked away.

Serving our trademark ‘cooked from scratch’ soups, sandwiches and home-baking, with lots of emphasis on freshness, exciting blends of flavours and taste, it’s our salads that often impress the most, including the food critics from The List magazine who ‘hit-listed’ Café Portrait in the 2014, 2015 and 2016 edition and said this: “Fabulous salads are the stars of the show, each colourful, distinct and full of flavour.” We were delighted that our Ottolenghi-inspired foodie experience has been recognised, and even more delighted that our customers (not just tourists and gallery visitors, but a growing loyal band of local fans too) are appreciating the extra touches we like to add. As in all our cafés there is always a strong emphasis on vegetarian food and also gluten and dairy-free dishes and bakes so everyone can have a treat.

Talking of treats, you can now book a table in advance at Café Portrait for our proper Afternoon Tea or buy a gift voucher, our vouchers make a great present for any occasion, what's not to love – a tiered stand of deliciousness if ever there was one. Why not push the boat out with a glass or two of Prosecco! We do recommend reserving for Afternoon Tea but it’s always worth popping in on the off chance if the urge takes you. 

SPECIAL AFTERNOON TEA OFFER - £30 for 2 when you book in advance. Please book using the booking facility on this page or call 0131 624 6421. 

When the counter gets busy, our Roving Barista serenely glides around the tables, ready to be flagged down to order an expertly-made latte and a slice of lemon polenta cake or whatever you fancy to end a lovely lunch and a unique cultural experience.

Yvonne is our brilliant café Manager here, supported by the nifty front of house double act which is Anna and Marta. In control stove-side is Yvonne C, our Queen of Baking, who is a source of inspiration to all our café bakers. Also cooking away in the kitchen is the fabulous Paul.