Thursday, 3 September 2009


The people involved professionally in London’s coffee circuit are a friendly lot. My own observations suggest that the respect and support they provide each other are unprecedented in dog-eat-dog London. Take James for example (if he has a poster of the Queen in his bedroom then he’s due an MBE for his services to the coffee trade); he directed me to the following- Taste of Bitter Love, Climpson and The Farm Collective. In my line of business we thrive on ripping each other to shreds instead. And on the subject of friendly coffee peeps, I came to one of the capital’s newest additions courtesy of Ms Scrambling Eggs. Shelagh, thank you.

Let’s get two negatives out of the way first. I’m not exactly bowled over by the choice of the logo. The bulbous and cursive font used is at odds with the architecturally designed café. The logo in my humblest is more indicative of the rag trade wholesalers that are found in the vicinity. The second quibble involves the mother of all ‘spoilt for choice’ dilemmas; Kaffeine is situated opposite my recent fave that’s the Scandinavian Kitchen. So every time I venture down Great Titchfield Street there’s a likely chance I’ll be over prescribing myself with too many caffeine hits. Paradise is indeed cruel.

I’m not a committed design geek but for reasons that can only be propped by my naivety, I studied architecture at college. Both Nude Espresso and Taste of Bitter Love, whilst differing wildly, represent my favourite kind of café designs. I’m glad to say that Kaffeine joins these two establishments with merit.

The overall concept is fresh, welcoming and thanks to the exposed brick wall on one side; it’s unlike to date that quickly either. Now because the owner hails from Down Under, a degree of apricity is also included in the ambience side of things.

Some of you might gall at the seating, it may not be the cushiest but surely I would be flabbergasted if the intention was to come here to write a novella with the aim of making a weeny latte lasts for hours on end. That is more galling.

This Mr Kaffeine aka Peter.
A tenacious looking fellow but exceedingly cordial.

The prancing horse of coffee machines except that as sacrileges go it’s not Italian made. If you see one of these machines then you can be sure a delicious cup of coffee beckons. The beans come from the ever dependable and by now indomitable Square Mile.

First test of flattie as always the case.
No superlatives required for this superb cup.

Small packages come with immense tidings of joy. Excellent.

Second visit confirmed that the flat white at Kaffeine is seriously good and the orange and walnut muffin was scrumptious and all.
Kudos also to Peter and Co for offering fresh mint tea on their menu; solution solved for those with a caffeine intolerance.

For a city of over seven million souls, there are never too many good coffee shops in London. Kaffeine like a handful of others exists to provide us with a life-changing cup of coffee. Give the instant or $tarbucks a rest, come here instead and you’ll be delighted. Highly recommended.

66 Great Titchfield Street
London W1W 7QJ


Siri said...

Oh you Londoners are such a lucky bunch of coffee drinkers. I feel another coffee expedition down from the Cam coming on in the near future, avec map of all your caffeine related recommendations. Oh, the awesomeness.

bea said...

I would totally trade in my pretty Italian Enzo for a shiny Synesso---they're designed by former engineers of La Marzocco, but really amped it up to make the coffee making super precise. However, it's like riding a ferrari--if you don't know what you're doing, it's quite a scary ride!

bellaphon said...

Siri- Thank you, Londoners are indeed spoilt rotten!

bea- Woah, what insight! Thanks, Bea.

Paul said...

You must have eaten an early section of OED to use a word like apricity in a coffee review, well done!

bellaphon said...

Paul- You're too kind and thank you. Actually the word stuck in my mind from reading my beloved Torygraph years ago!

Anonymous said...

I actually lovwe the logo - the combo is very Stockholm, IMO. Haven't tried or even seen it yet ... thanks for the tip.

bellaphon said...

Anon- maybe I've been too harsh, could be a lot worse with a Motorhead type font!

Anonymous said...

No, not too harsh, but if I go there and to Scandi Kitchen I know I will long to go to Stockholm ... what I wouldn't give for a coffee and a cinnamon bun.

Grant said...

I like the logo!

Peter said...

hello bellaphon, thank you so much for taking the time to come past and say hello and post such a lovely review, it is really appreciated.

bea, yes it is like driving a ferrari, we had a fun drive last saturday for example!, but we cannot wait now for the new Autumn SQM blend to come in early next week as that will be sweet!

Peter said...

oh, and as for being tenacious?? My wife loved that one... GRRRRRRRRRRRR

bellaphon said...

Grant- Thanks for stopping. I tried so hard to look for any negativity surrounding Kaffeine, to come up with the excuse on the logo is starting to look rather pathetic. I'm not worthy ;(

Peter- Don't mention it, you know you have a winner! Tenacity is my second name but I'm envious that my looks don't reflect it!