There’s little that makes me happier than really, really good coffee. It’s hard to find on the high street – how Leon, Pret et al get away with the watery nonsense they serve at £2.50+ is beyond me – and only Café Nero inspires any kind of loyalty.
Due to me having the odd breakfast meeting here and there, I’ve been on a quiet mission for delicious caffeine fixes around my office (in the Strand/Covent Garden area) for the past year or two, and that’s how I came to love Villiers, a café that opened this summer on Villiers Street, right by Embankment.
There are actually many reasons to love it. The lovely velvety-blue signage and pretty typography. The ever-changing menu. The convivial, relaxed breakfast-lunch-coffee-wine o’clock atmosphere. The fact that it’s run by the children of the owner of London institution Gordon’s wine bar, just a few doors down (now grown up… this isn’t the work of sugared-up eight year olds). Their adorable Instagram account. The smiley, joking staff who always seem to be having a good day.
But even without all of this background knowledge (even the fantastic cappuccino art), I love it because they serve really good, wake-you-up-with-a-slap coffee and delicious avocado on sourdough toast. It’s my new favourite breakfast meeting spot. Tied with my other favourite breakfast meeting spot that I’ll be blogging about shortly…
Three more places for excellent coffee in London:
A neighbourhood favourite in Balham. Owned by Kiwis, who always seem to know their taint from their crust*. Look out for the sister restaurant Fields Cafe, coming soon to Clapham Common.
2. Tap Coffee
Three branches around Soho and Fitzrovia. The real deal.
3. Monmouth Coffee
Not many seats, but the coffee scent thwacks you in the head as you walk in (in a good way). Warning: you may be seduced into buying a tiny bag of the brown stuff for £7.
*These are coffee cupping terms, for the un-addicted.