Yesterday I spent the day in London. Nothing really exciting there I hear you say. I go to the capital probably five or six times a year. But I always go on business, and I always have a very tight schedule and never get to sit and relax in coffee shops watching the world go by.
So on this day I planned to drink coffee and have a relaxing day. I arrived fairly early which gave me some time to go to the apple store in Regent street, to look at shiny things, of which there were many. I like the apple store for sure. First stop from here was a decent tube ride to –
Climpson and son (Hackney)
I didn’t really know a lot about this place. I do read the blog of one of the Baristas, and seemed like a cool place to start with and work my way back into town. After trying hard to find it, I ordered a double espresso and 12oz cappuccino (a little large for me but hey). I was disappointed to be given paper cups after a good ten min wait (I dont mind waiting its a sign that its good but paper cups for staying in was not so hot). I can understand why they do the paper cup thing, they were rammed but…….
The espresso was very well extracted and although a little darker than I’m used to it was sweet and nice body. The cap got dust even though I said no sprinkles but once I stirred it in it was smooth and tasty but a little cold (even for me).
The place was really rammed and queue stayed out the door for the whole time I was there.
I was hungry so ordered some food, and that was amazing. I had oak smoked mackerel with horseradish and toast which was awesome. Here I was joined by Dom my friend, and we moved on to
Sacred Coffee Barnaby Street
This was suggested by a good friend who joined us James. The atmosphere was good here and like everything in London was jammed. I had an espresso and a cap here, and they were both good well presented. This was a nice surprise I was not expecting it to be so good. Good Coffee nice place but we were on a mission and moved on to
Fernandez & Wells
Nice place, good people, but the espresso and a cap didn’t live up to the people and great atmosphere. The barista did a good job with what he was working with. the ice water was much appreciated here as I was starting to feel the fun of the previous night. But the coffee I couldn’t really work out, it was way to dark and little complexity to excite.
Here I met up with some more friends and it was getting a big party but Mark and René were welcome friends.
I’ve never been to Flat White, everyone tells me I should so I did. The place was much smaller than I expected. But very cosy and very nicely set out. With Jim with us were were getting specialist service I think as he’s a bit of a celebrity around these shops. I had an espresso and a long black. The long black was good, but I don’t get on with the acidity of monmouth espresso so not sure why I had a shot. It’s good quality coffee but I’ve never had a shot I’ve enjoyed, this time was no different, even with the up dosing shortness of the pull the acidity was still too much for me. But saying that the best atmosphere of the day and real care in drink preparation.
Monmouth Coffee Monmouth Street
The days getting late now and when we arrive no seats meant we didn’t stop for coffee take out at 6pm didn’t sound like fun which was a shame as a lot of there coffee offerings looked very familiar to me and looked very tempting, as I’d love to taste there take on the coffee we stock.
So that was my day in london. I still felt like I had rushed and wish I’d started earlier. I missed going to Monmouth’s borough Market store which every one tells me I should see. I think another day some time soon is on the list.
I was very impressed not so much with the coffee but the care in these really busy places with there drink preparation. I’m so pleased to see people trying harder.