The question ‘where to get the best cup of coffee in London,’ might get a different answer depending on when you ask. Now that I am pondering this question in a quiet Finnish market town – unable to get my weekend morning fix anywhere within 100 km radius – I am declined to answer: from Monmouth Coffee.
Apart from the rich yet balanced cups of perfect macchiatos, it is the atmosphere in Monmouth Coffee that makes me come to this conclusion. There are other, sleekier, shinier and classier coffee shops in London, but for me, it is the constant buzz, the constant selling and buying of beans, the constant flow of filter brew that makes me dream of Monmouth Coffee.
I have had the luck of visiting Monmouth Coffee on various occasions and every time I have been greeted by the same view: a queue around the corner. I seldom, if ever, queue for food, but for coffee I’m happy to wait in line. Actually, standing in a coffee line for Monmouth is part of the experience: you feel the anticipation growing, you count the customers in front of you to calculate how much longer is it going to take. And then, after surprisingly quick few minutes, you reach the doorstep: you see the lucky people scattered around a big communal table, the even luckier ones sipping on the cups in solitude. You smell the coffee, you can almost touch the beans.
And then, finally, the magical moment when the macchiato is in your hand and you take the first sip underneath the old green rail tracks covering the Borough market. Suddenly, you start wishing to be still in the queue, the experience still awaiting for you.
A perfect cup of coffee, a perfect London experience.
What: Monmouth Coffee is a relatively old roastery, dating back to 1978 when it started operating in Monmouth Street, Covent Garden. For decades the passionate roasters have dedicated themselves to bring the best beans to market, and to teach both staff and customers on the nuances of coffee consumption. I really appreciate Monmouth Coffee’s newsletter telling more about the coffee farms and farmers they collaborate with: informative read! You can find out more from the roastery’s web page here.
Where: Monmouth Coffee has expanded since the times in a Covent Garden cellar, and has now 3 spots in London: 2 Park Street in The Borough, 27 Monmouth Street in Covent Garden, and the roastery in Bermondsey.
P.S. On a Scandinavian coffee experience in London you can read here: Nordic Bakery.