This coffee shop has been open about a month, but I only found out about it a couple of days ago thanks to a tweet from Brian’s Coffee Spot mentioning it. It’s on Lower Marsh near Waterloo station, a street I go along fairly regularly, but I hadn’t noticed it because they shut at 5.30 and I tend to come along here after that. So I made sure to pay them a visit at the weekend instead.
The place is very global-travel inspired, as the name suggests. There are lots of maps on the walls, and a globe drinks cabinet serving for cutlery storage. All of which I really liked. They’ve called their loyalty cards ‘passports’, complete with various passport stamps from different countries. And if you take a photo of the card in any of a list of famous worldwide tourist attractions, they’ll treat you to a free lunch when you return from your hols.
There are a few small tables and stools, and one large table made with a Lego topping with their name, which looks very cool.
In the windows and on the walls there are also lots of interesting / funny screenprinted messages too (see photos). Some of them were done very much in the style of street artist Slinkachu, with tiny people lending giant scale to photos.
In other words, the whole place feels like someone’s really thought about the overall concept, and the design. And it pretty much works, rather than feeling overdone.
“It’s not at all cluttered, but there’s something to see in every corner” said my gf, which is a good way of putting it.
The coffee was from Ozone; I had a latte and cappuccino, both equally good. The latter had chocolate in it, which I’ve noticed a lot of the good independent coffee shops don’t seem to do by default, so it made a nice change.
They had a range of salads and ciabatta sandwiches. There were signs up proclaiming that if you couldn’t get a seat at Balthazar, then they had their pastries for sale. I’d never heard of it, but apparently it’s a New York restaurant which is famously hard to get bookings for… They opened a branch in Covent Garden earlier this year with an attached boulangerie which must be supplying them, although I didn’t see what they had on offer.
The staff seemed friendly and the guy in charge (I assume the owner, whose card had his job title listed as CEO and Bottlewasher) was outgoing, engaging several groups of customers in conversation.
I really liked this place; the only problem I’m going to have is I’m unlikely to be able to visit it that often, unless perhaps I take a detour on the way into work in the mornings.
Be sure to check out their Twitter feed or Pinterest page for amusing travel photos (which they also have showing on a widescreen TV in the café).
Also how many businesses do you know that list their latitude and longitude on their website?
See also these reviews and articles here: