So I continue my search for the best coffee shop in central London using my Criteria and hit-list. And I finally made it to Kaffeine, the oft-praised antipodean coffee shop raved about by various twitterites including Tim Hayward. So me and the gorgeous Penelope, identical twin to Argentine Aileen, went there for lunch a couple of weeks ago and I thanked my lucky stars yet again for having lovely friends working close by for weekday gossip-filled lunches, the highlight of my working week.
Anyway, the food looked great so I bought a slice of quiche with salad, which was extremely yummers although at £6 on the pricey side. It was a chilled out relaxed place BUT the tables at the back were at the wrong height – you either have to bend down to reach your food/coffee or sit with it on your knee, not very practical. God that was dull, sorry.
Anyway, on to the coffee. I ordered a flat white which was £2.20 ish. They have a super duper “Synesso Cyncra espresso machine” which they are very proud of – when I was taking photos of the coffee shop they asked me if I wanted to photograph the coffee machine. I said no but only because Penelope had run outside in embarrassment and I did look like a complete dick yet again taking photos and it’s hard to pull off “excited tourist” in a suit. Anyway the coffee is Square Mile and apparently the beans are from El Salvador and Costa Rica. It was nice and creamy, tick. Good use of coffee art, tick. Tasty tangy taste, tick. And with a nice little kick, tick. BUT it was only lukewarm and since I’ve been getting into my coffee, this is my new pet hate. Coffee should arrive HOT so then you can sit around, holding it in your hands and looking pensive / sexy, and then sipping slowly, taking your time and thinking or reading or gossiping. If it arrives lukewarm you need to pretty much down it before it gets even colder which ruins the whole seduction. It may be that the fancy pants coffee machine means the coffee cools too much (and I know there is a bit of a wait for coffee), or because it was a Friday lunchtime and busy so may have sat on the counter, but anyway it needed to be hotter for my liking. And the low table at the back thing (dull).
So, for that reason, my favourite central London coffee shops remain Store Street Espresso and Wild & Wood. But Flat White is yet to come. Oh yes.
Posted in 2. CONNECT - Bars, restaurants, pubs, supper clubs, coffee shops, Best coffee shops in London
Tagged best coffee shop in central London, Fitzrovia, Flat White, Kaffeine, lunch places, Store Street Espresso, Wild & Wood
So here’s my criteria and hit-list for finding the best coffee shop in Central London. And yes I hear you – “Flat White! Flat White!” – I will get there eventually but I’m taking my time, mkay? I don’t want another over-egged Byron experience. To recap, I’m looking for a chilled, cosy, friendly place with tasty coffee with depth and a kick. The kind of place you can go to gossip or to sit alone on your laptop or reading your book. Simples.
Store Street Espresso opened recently so it’s brand spanking new and right by the back entrance to the British Museum so is favoured by good friend and guest blogger Pippalippa as venue for drinking coffee and doing Chinese homework. We went along for lunch and I was really impressed.
It is lovely inside – minimalist and arty but also warm and cosy which is quite a feat, and with enough corners and angles to be private. Great mix between people on their own and groups – I expect you could grab a paper and while away several hours in there. Super friendly staff who were happy to let me snap away. And good music – Nu-folk which is cool (unlike Old-folk which apparently is not). I’m a fan of music in coffee shops, makes for a better atmosphere in my humble opinion – I thought the London Review of Books cafe was just too quiet. I did ask them where the coffee beans were from, they answered and I nodded and then I completely forgot what they said. But the coffee was really good – I ordered a flat white at around £2.20 I think and it was strong and deep and creamy but with a nice little kick which helped my tired and jet-lagged ass get through the afternoon at work. And it came with a heart on top – a heart! I used to think coffee art was gimmicky but I like it now. Nice doorstop bread sarnie with cheese and pickle too. Definitely recommended for grabbing a coffee and a bite to eat if you’re in Bloomsbury. Oh and I finally worked out why my previous photos were so blurry (I’d switched the focus to manual by mistake) – so these photos are back to normal.
Posted in 2. CONNECT - Bars, restaurants, pubs, supper clubs, coffee shops, Best cheap eats in London, Best coffee shops in London
Tagged best coffee shop in central London, best coffee shops in London, coffee shop, on your own, Store Street Espresso