Coming up to my third year in London, I'm putting together a series of articles on living here and what I've learnt. This is for a number of reasons, but primarily because I keep getting asked for my recommendations and it made sense to collate them here on Curias.
I've already published my 10 Apps for London and in the coming weeks, I'll be writing my top 10:
- Things to do when you arrive
- Brunch spots
- Dinner spots
Coffee is something very close to my heart and as an Australian I am naturally a self-appointed expert. But "my top 10" is a range of places that I've enjoyed and I don't actually claim that these are the best in London. Rather, they're consistently the best I've tried while I've been here. You will see a slight bias to central and West London locations.
- Department of Coffee and Social Affairs. Apart from a sterling name, this independent chain takes their coffee seriously and also their supply chain and sourcing. One of the most consistent places for an excellent coffee. Not cheap, but not outrageously expensive (by London standards).
- Prufrock. Another sterling name with a literary twist, Prufrock is located on Leather Lane, almost opposite a Department of Coffee and Social Affairs. Prufrock is where I've had my best coffee on London. It has a nice chill vibe and not (usually) overbearing with coffee geekery.
- The Attendant. I've only been to there Fitzrovia location but I love it. Such a quirky location (a former subterranean public restroom) with great coffee and food. Not usually too busy.
- Press Coffee & Co. Great value and reliably good flat whites. Usually a cheeky selection of treats, including CrossTown doughnuts, available to hungry customers.
- TAP coffee. Scattered throughout West London, I've found TAP coffee shops to be consistently great. Sometimes the "we're an indie coffee chain" vibe is slightly overbearing but the coffee is delicious.
- Black Sheep. I've only been to the location in Fitzrovia, but they delivered excellent flat whites. As standard with most of these places, often staffed by Aussies and Kiwis.
- Association Coffee. On the higher end of the expense spectrum, but incredibly reliable and delicious. Also, some of my favourite stores - relaxed, quiet and minimalist with good papers on offer.
- Curators Coffee. I must admit I've only been here a couple of times but each time impressed me. No-frills coffee in the best possible sense.
- Kaffeine. Another place revealing my West London bias - Kaffeine are an excellent outfit and there is one right near The Attendant. Perfect for a coffee crawl.
- Alchemy. Mainly an importer and roaster, these guys have a small cafe to showcase their work near St Paul's Cathedral.
Honourable mention: my local, The Elgin. They always get me a great coffee, and sometimes on the house!
Dishonourable mention: Workshop Coffee. Yes delicious, but £3.10 for a small latte? Perhaps dishonourable is a bit harsh, but I think they are overrated for what they deliver.