London is known for its great coffee culture. Not only do an amount of people visit the London Coffee Festival but also the various special cafés located in the whole city. It does not matter if you crave Scandinavian food or pastries because you will find what you are longing for. Almost in every corner you will find a café whether offering around 20 kinds of tea like Yumchaa or mostly coffee specialities like Flat White.
In order to get an overview of some various cafés in London, Café London is a great solution, providing reviews of cafés in the categories brunch, lunch, coffee and afternoon tea. The rather small book weighs almost nothing, thus is perfect to take it with you on a city trip. It is a guidebook to find those brilliantly brewed coffee, unparalleled cake stand and perfect cups of tea. It covers not only the places where you can have a simple brunch among friends but also glamorous afternoon tea with fondant fancies.
On the last pages you will find maps where the certain cafés are marked which makes it easier to find the preferred cafés. Additionally, all cafés which are mentioned in the book are categorised into groups according to the area where the cafés are located. Thus, if you go for a walk in East London, for example Shoreditch for its great markets, you can directly check a café near you to have a sip of coffee and to relax.
Unfortunately, Germany does not offer such a coffee culture as London does and searching for great, independent cafés while living in Germany is hard. But I had the opportunity to spend some days in London, so that I also checked some cafés from the Café London. And all I can say is that I was really stunned. At first, it was difficult to choose some cafés and make a plan but I am very pleased with my choice. Below you find the cafés I visited, thanks to Café London.
The previous life of this café was suprisingly the Victorian toilet in Fritzrovia. It was built around 1890 and mothballed after 70 years. After this 50 years of inactivity The Attendant got a new face, presenting an underground café in which some parts of the Doulton & Co porcelain urinals and the Victorian floor tiles were reused to create an extraordinary café, a converted men’s lavatory. It is worth a visit and there is also a second one in Shoreditch (not a converted former toilet though).
If you check out the main website of Monocle, you will see that it is not just a café but rather a news/lifestyle magazine with its own different magazine issues, radio and shop where you can buy notebooks, travel guides and other things just to mention a few. Monocle was founded by the Canadian journalist and entrepreneur Tyler Brûlé in 2007 and the magazine will be published ten times per year. Going back to the café, it has a clean Scandinavian yet cosy interior design with its various meal, appetiser and drink offers from Japanese cakes to matcha hot chocolate.
In the book it stands “‘Dark rye bread’, ‘cinnamon buns’ and ‘coffee’ are the trio of enticers emblazoned on the window of this café” and that is basically true. That is why I wanted to visit Nordic Bakery, especially because I am a cinnamon addict. The cinnamon bun is awesome and other than I have known before, moist and sticky inside and on the outside crunchy and glossy. However, I must admit that the waitress and another woman behind the till were quite rude, so that I was really shocked and could not enjoy my sweets and tea. Well, although the cinnamon buns are great, I would rather buy it for take away. Or maybe check the one in Fabrique Bakery which shall be better anyway. That is why I did not take any pictures.
Café London is a great guide if you want to have an easy book to peruse while walking through the city of London. Usually describing the cafés just in a few sentences and not spending too many pages on one review, it is simple and handy to go through. That is why Café London comprises 100 café reviews. There are definitely some cafés which will meet your expectations!
Images: some @tomwanted, some by me, edit by me.