london coffee guide
From the independent roasters to the bespoke barista training academies, the bustling artisan coffee scene in London is continuously expanding. It’s difficult to narrow down the options to this one small list. In fact, there are books dedicated to coffee in London. I decided to limit the list to central London, but if you plan to explore greater London, there are some helpful links that I have shared below.
Monmouth Coffee Company
Monmouth Coffee Company is like the mothership of specialty coffee in London. They first opened in 1978 in Covent Garden. They use to roast their beans in the cramped basement for 30 years, but now they just have their cafe there. Since then, have moved their roasting operation to Bermondsey, where they have a tasting room open on Saturdays from 9:00am-1:30pm. They also have an additional location at the Borough Market. Monmouth has a wide variety of single origin beans with natural process or standard roasting options. One of my favorite things about Monmouth is that they make pour over samples for you to taste before purchasing beans.
Covent Garden - open Monday to Saturday (closed Sunday), 8-6.30pm 27 Monmouth Street
London WC2H 9EU
The Borough - open Monday to Saturday (closed Sunday), 7:30-6.00pm 2 Park Street
London SE1 9AB
Bermondsey - Saturdays only, 9-1.30pm Unit 4 Discovery Estate
London SE16 4RA
One of the best flat whites I’ve had so far in London was at Kaffeine (they also boast the best cortado outside of Spain). The owners were inspired by the coffee culture in New Zealand and Australia. They have two locations—one in Soho and another in Fitzrovia. Both options have a well-trained staff who are meticulous about making coffee. They even have their own barista school. Good vibes, great coffee.
Soho - Monday to Friday 7:30am-6.00pm; Sat 8.30am-6.00pm; Sun 9-5.00pm 15 Eastcastle Street
London W1T 3AY
Fitzgrovia - Monday to Friday 7:30am-6.00pm; Sat. 8.30-6pm, Sun 9-5.00pm 66 Great Titchfield Street
London W1W 7QJ
Worskshop Coffee is another independent roaster with five different locations, each with a different feel. They have a great relationship with the farmers and exporters of their beans. Most of their coffee is from Africa and parts of Central and South America. They offer espresso drinks as well as pour overs.
Several locations, open 7 days a week at week at varying times
Origin Coffee Roasters
Origin is a bespoke coffee roaster with several locations around greater London, one of which is in the hip area of Shoreditch. They roast their beans in Cornwall where they have a seasonal tasting room as well as their warehouse. They have an in-house barista training program, but there are also courses for coffee enthusiasts!
Several locations, open 7 days at week at varying times
Prufrock is a mecca of everything coffee—from their carefully sourced beans and artisan caffeinated drinks, to their coffee gear and accoutrements. They do not roast beans in house, but have a curated selection that changes with the seasons. The owners are passionate about what they do and it doesn’t go unnoticed. They have a training center that offers programs and courses such as a home barista class, introduction to latte art, private barista coffee training and general coffee practice sessions. They also have options for organic, locally sourced food at their cafe.
Prufrock - Monday to Friday, 7:30-6pm; weekends 10am-5pm 23-25 Leather Lane London EC1N 7TE
Ozone Coffee Roasters
The owners of Ozone Coffee are originally from New Zealand, where there are two additional locations. They serve excellent coffee and delicious food. Ozone takes an environmental approach to their menu, consisting of sustainable food with minimal waste. After you enjoy a cup of coffee, order a craft cocktail from their full bar. They serve an all-day brunch until 4:30p; dinner from 5:00pm on.
Ozone Coffee - Monday to Friday 7–10pm; Saturday–Sunday 8.30–5.30pm 11 Leonard St London EC2A 4AQ
Curators Coffee Gallery
Curators Coffee Gallery prides themselves on serving “the best” coffee using the best equipment. As their name suggests, they carefully source their coffee and espresso beans based on what’s in season. They also serve seasonal food from local suppliers—fresh pastries, avocado toast, vegetable side dishes, inventive salads, breakfast options and such. They have a cafe in Fitzrovia and a concession stand near the Leadenhall Market.
Curators Coffee Gallery - Monday to Friday, 7.30–6pm; Sat/Sun, 9– 5:30pm 51 Margaret Street Marylebone London W1W 8SG
Curators Coffee Studio - Monday to Friday, 7.30-5.30pm (closed Sat/Sun) 9A Cullum Street London EC3M 7JJ
HR Higgins started in 1942 and remains a family operation, now run by the grandson. It is a premier organization to say the least—this is where the Queen gets her beans. They are located in Mayfair, near the Bond Street tube station. The ground floor area showcases their variety of beans and pour over coffee operation. Downstairs there is a polished space to enjoy your coffee or tea.
Mayfair - Monday to Friday 8.00-6.00pm; Saturday 10.00-6.00pm 79 Duke St London W1K 5AS
Alchemy is a small, independent coffee roastery with a cafe located in central London. They outsource their beans to a few different places around the city. They take pride in their craft and also host their own training courses. On Thursdays and Fridays, they serve food and libations in the evening.
Alchemy Cafe - Monday to Wednesday, 7-5pm; Thursday to Friday 7-8pm Ludgate Broadway London EC4V 6DX