The London Guide
Researched and written by The Coffeevine’s co-founder Alex Kitain, this is your compact guide to some of London’s finest specialty coffee shops
There are few cities that are more iconic than London. The English capital literally rocks and rules our lives in so many ways that we cannot fathom where to begin and where to end.
From Her Majesty Queen Elisabeth II to the Black Cab, from the Tower of London to Tate Modern, from Brick Lane to Saville Row. There are simply too many amazing things to talk about, see, smell, taste and experience.
This small guide to some of London’s finest coffee is purely based on our own recommendations and places we have personally visited over the past few years. Of course, if you’re in the coffee world, you’ll know that London has one of the highest per km² concentrations of coffee bars and coffee shops anywhere on the planet, and plenty of guides and books have been written to list its myriad of amazing specialty coffee shops.
But if you’re only in town for a short while. Try and cram in at least a few of the ones listed below. You won’t regret it.
Nude Coffee Roastery
For anyone visiting the London Coffee Festival this weekend but wanting a wee bit of respite from all the craziness inside the Old Truman Brewery, you should visit the year old Nude Coffee Roastery on Hanbury St. It is actually right opposite Nude’s flagship café but feels a lot more industrial with its massive 35kg Loring roaster and bean bar. This is a great place to read your morning paper while sipping on a delicious espresso.
26 Hanbury St, London E1 6QR – Read our full review here
This London branch of one of New Zealand’s most renowned coffee roasters is a wonderful neighbourhood café that, until last year, also hosted the entire UK roasting operation of Allpress UK. Nowadays, all of the roasting is done at a spectacular space in Dalston but the Allpress flagship store is still a fabulous place to have a light lunch and a great cup of coffee while ambling around beautiful Shoreditch.
58 Redchurch St, London E2 7DP – Read our full review here
Caravan Coffee Roasters King’s Cross
One of our most favourite places to grab a delicious coffee and have a yummy brunch is Caravan King’s Cross. Located amidst one of the city’s most exciting redevelopments, Caravan shines with its easygoing Kiwi hospitality, delicious food and spectacular coffees.
1, Granary Building, Granary Square, London N1C 4AA – Read our full review here
Climpson & Sons Café
We have a huge soft spot for the lovely people at Climpson & Sons. They have been some of the biggest supporters of The Coffeevine since day one and we absolutely love what they do. Next to their awesome roastery, they also maintain this quaint café on Broadway in Hackney that is one of the best streets to go to in the weekends.
67 Broadway Market, London E8 4PH – Read our full review here
Department of Coffee And Social Affairs
On a hot summer day two years ago, I first stumbled upon this lovely coffee bar on Leather Lane and it was a truly wonderful find. The people here work with so much passion and easygoing friendliness that you cannot help but stick around for ages.
14–16 Leather Ln, London EC1N 7SU – Read our full review here
To most people, Prufrock needs little introduction, but if you do happen to be in the dark about what this incredible coffee-obsessed place is, then you should just visit to see for yourself. Founded by former Barista World Champion Gwilym Davies and Jeremy Challender, Prufrock has been rocking the London coffee scene unabatedly since 2009. A must visit!
23-25 Leather Ln, London EC1N 7TE – Read our full review here
Ozone Coffee Roasters
Like Climpson & Sons and Caravan Coffee Roasters, we count Ozone amongst our close family of superstar roasters who roast and serve some of the best coffees in town. Charismatic owners Lizzie and James Gurr are some of the friendliest people in the scene and make sure that every customer gets the best possible experience. Whether you’re just popping in for an espresso or a full on meal, Ozone is the bee’s knees.
11 Leonard St, London EC2A 4AQ – Read our full review here
Exmouth Coffee Company
The first café we ever reviewed in London, and still one of our absolute favourites. Hidden in plain sight on Whitechapel High Street, this gem of a place has excellent coffee and even better home baked pastries, cakes and quiches. You literally won’t know what to choose, everything looks so damn good.
83 Whitechapel High Street, London E1 7QX – Read our full review here
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Looking for more great coffee spots in London?
We’ve got plenty more recommendations.