good coffee, comfy seats, there could be more choice of cakes. And the music was too loud. But overall, good vibe and the feel.
Now, if you know me personally, you'll know my long-standing tradition of becoming a pillar that holds up the walls of my local coffee house.
None of this "cafe" shit, I like a place that serves coffee, first and foremost, not as an afterthought or beverage to accompany some food item. I want a coffee house that has used furnishings to sit in, plays obscure indie music and is run by people that look moderately "misunderstood"
I really wanted that to be Coffee @ Goswell, and still do in that way in which you think about your highschool crush and wonder if you had kids together what they would look like today...(covers up back of notebook being doodled on).. but alas, coffee @ somehow flies off my radar. I'm not sure why, the baristas look mildly "misunderstood", there's used furnishings and they sell coffee that smells like coffee, not freeze dried imposter-coffee... they even painted the inside to make it more ... bright? But as a laptop user, I can't sit there for more than 20 minutes because it's always so effing freezing that I can't move my fingertips with enough dexterity to type more than 10 WPM. For whatever reason, they like to keep the door open, or not turn up the heating, and I find myself bundled up with my Americano looking like I'm waiting in the green room for a Dr. Zhivago audition.
I want to love you, Coffee @... but it's not me, it's you. Let's take some time apart and see where we are in the summer... maybe we can be more exclusive once it's warmer.
Goswell Road Coffee was my saviour this past summer, when an unprecedented heatwave struck an ill-equipped London. Well, at least my office was unprepared for the stifling heat that sucked the air out of our fan-less, broiling space. With no access to a freezer and an internal alarm for caffeine that goes off at 3pm daily, I relied on Goswell Coffee for iced coffee to cool me down and perk me up. At first I religiously ordered their perfectly satisfying iced white Americano, until a coworker turned me on to their blended coffees. I generally dislike any blended coffee that is not my own or from Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf in California (their Vanilla Ice Blended with an extra shot of espresso is perfection), but Goswell Road's blended coffees are quite good, actually. Their mocha and banana-mocha blended coffees are not cloyingly sweet and are made with a rich chocolate syrup. I usually asked for half the amount of chocolate syrup since my sugar tolerance is minimal, but even without that adjustment the blended coffees avoid the overt syrupy sweetness of Starbuck's Frappuccinos. One time my request was ignored however, as the barista blatantly pumped the same amount of chocolate in my order as in my coworker's. I found this disregard for the customer unsettling, and would have preferred to be told that they do not make any substitutions/adjustments. After that incident, I sought my blended coffees at Look Mum No Hands (an excellent but pricier coffeehouse in the area).
Goswell Road Coffee offers good coffee for reasonable prices, and their kilo bags of freshly roasted beans for £14 are a steal. The setting is welcoming enough to sit down with a coffee and a laptop and make use of their free wifi for an afternoon, but I have only gotten takeaway coffee from here to bring back to my office. Quirky touches such as a daily horoscope at the counter, a forged autographed photo of J.K. Rowling with an absurd grammatical error, X'ed out photos of dead celebrities, and hilarious signs out front offering free pedicures at the salon next door and proclaiming that they have the best curry in London (they don't have curry) add a unique (although slightly try-hard) vibe to the coffeehouse. I just hope they treat their customers with respect to retain their loyalty in coffeehouse-saturated London.
(Last visited November 2013)
I love this coffee shop. More importantly, I love the coffee at the coffee shop. And the free wi-fi. And the painfully "I'm not trying to be hip but I'm still so hip, right? Please don't tell me I'm hip cause I'm too punk to be hip. In fact, I'm too punk to eat bagels" baristas.
And while my review will never stack up against the glory of Thomas A's (seriously, I'd recommend you stop reading mine right this minute and shift over to his instead), I will say that it's a perfect spot in the summer months to sit, sip, browse and people watch with the door wide open and the indie music blasting. Or a nice Swayze number. Preferably 'she's like the wind' or 'raising heaven in hell tonight, if anyone's asking. Nothing like Swayze to aid in the enjoyment of one of London's best flat whites...
Check other reviews for some nice hipster quips - they be pretty spot-on. Eclectic distressed comfy furniture in a faux-warehousey indie-music-pulsing joint, yeah. All that.
I like that a) the milk drinks (£2.5) are always well made, even if they aren't featurative of the finest espresso and milk inputs, b) there are many many wall outlets for laptopping, c) the "chav coffee" is pretty decent filter coffee and not pretentiously priced (£1-£2, S-L), d) the music tends to be good* and loud enough to create a sonic wash that perfectly ensheathes my mental focus. Mostly. Except perhaps with a bias toward Yelp reviewing e.g. over MSc. in Food Policy research e.g.
My heart has not been pierced by Goswell Street Coffee, by any means. But I like sitting in there much more than in my uni library. I deny the term "hipster" and dig the vibe. There. Said it.
*Except. One time a Max Tundra song came on! Wow! Suprise! How cool! And then (and this is the only time I can recall this action being taken) 30 seconds later the barista cut the song off in favour of some euro-pulse chill downbeat-y blandness! Wow! Not cool @ all!
This place holds a special place in my heart as one of the many coffee shops utilized during my graduate school time...Really, I drank more coffee this past year than my entire life COMBINED!!! Anyway, it breaks my heart that this place is currently under renovation, and has been for sometime.
Sometimes, you just want a cup of coffee that's not from the juggernaut that is Star-Costa-Nero. And Coffee @ Goswell had a great indie feel, albeit the heat usually never worked. So you traded heat for the 'authenticity' of a coffee shop...hey, being Indie is not easy, people! You gotta work for it!
Should be finished pretty soon and I, for one, will make the trip to check it out.
Now if you know coffee@bricklane you might think coffee@goswell is similar just because it belongs to the same independent chain.
Coffee@goswell is much quieter and the ideal place to hide away from and for work. As there is wireless internet connection, you will find lots of students studying all day long while nipping at their latte. Their coffee is strong and definitely keeps you awake and for a vitamin burst try one of their smoothies freshly made.
The lamps are made out of take away cups, which look quite original and there are lots of sofas and window tables to sit down. If you have no laptop there is access to 2 computers to check e-mails.
They have the star signs of the day for you to read while waiting for you order and newspapers to flick through. Open everyday from 7am in the morning until 8pm in the evening made me many times go there to have a change from working at University only. If there is a sunny day, there is a small bench to sit outside.
I love a coffee shop that knows how to do a good flat white! Coffee @ is one of those places. Though it's not quite as good at Flat White or Monmouth I would be more than happy to let them feed my addiction.
Oh! they also do various other coffees, some very nice sandwiches (comes with a handful of crisps) and your usual organic juices.
If I had gone to university on Goswell rd, this would be my number one hang out.
Brick Lane's awkward little brother! Goswell Rd Coffee doesn't pull off the tackiness as effortlessly as the other shop, but for a good cup of coffee, baristas who don't give a flip, and a cool place to hang out for a while this is pretty good.
There are a good number of plugs for charging up, free wifi, and computers in the back.
Couches...couches everywhere. Really good space...and couches :-). The coffee is just ok, but the music selection is excellent, as are the workers. Also...couches.
This is my absolute favourite cafe i the whole world! Well, In London at least. Its great, lovely decor, great coffee, snacks, lunch and brunches and super nice staff too.
And, you are allowed to bring your bike in if you are just popping in to buy a take away coffee, great stuff.
Hipster cafe right around my block. This indie place closes early but there are always people chilling inside. Flat white is delicious but not particularly cheap. It's a nice laid back hang out place with free wifi (I believe), though not the best/friendliest baristas around the neighborhood
Didn't quite realise which place I dropped into. However, when I saw the loyalty cards, I realised its one of the Coffee @ stores. This one is almost as good as the one on Brick lane. A bit more spacious, but also a bit more messy. Friendly staff. Very good cappucino, albeit imperfect. As I popped in for a bit of a late lunch, I managed to get a good deal--50% off the sandwich price. The place also has free wifi. The slight criticism would be that it I had to change tickets with wifi password 3 times, before they managed to find one that was working. Not really an issue, but they seem to be a bit disorganised.
I am a complete coffee addict so I am always looking for that perfect cup of coffee and believe me, I can be fussy. All though Coffee @ is an chain I am ranking it pretty high. The latte is always perfectly milky with a soft medium roasted texture, plus you can have a free conscious as the coffee is organic and fair trade, as are all the other snacks they sell. The chain is independent and certified as carbon free business! The only minus I can think of are the paper cups but as just mentioned before, it is for a good cause.
The venue in Goswell road is my favorite because it does not get too busy, you get nice sofas, good selection of magazines and big windows to spy on the people passing by.
The Coffee@ chain of cafes has to be one of London's few benevolent chains. Everything about it from the old, second hand furniture to the quirky messages written in chalk on the boards outside (this morning's said Gunz and Rozes ate here in 1985) makes it the kind of neighbourhood coffee place that has all but disappeared since Starbucks took over London with their overpriced and pretty lousy coffees. It is almost the 'antichain' chain!
The staff here are always exceedingly friendly, the wifi is free with any purchase, the music is great (anything from Thom Yorke to Koop to the Beatles circa 1965) and the 'buy 10 drinks get 1 free' cards are always appreciated and fill up fast.
I think they use Monmouth coffee here (I think!), they get their pastries from the Flower Power Bakery (the best almond croissants in London!) and the range of herbal teas and chai is also great. They have jugs of ice water and glasses (free!) that you can help yourself to and nice touches like honey and soya milk at the condiments bar plus free dog biscuits for dogs.
Everyone seems to drop in to coffee@ and you'll see anyone from students to office workers to moms and babies sitting on the couches having their daily cuppa.
The noticeboards are also a great way to find out what is happening in your area.
People sometimes like to pick on coffee@ for being a chain and trying to seem 'bohemian' with all the scruffy second-hand furniture. Yes, coffee@ is a chain - they have branches in Whitecross St, Bermonsey St, 2 on Brick Lane, Goswell Rd and probably others but it is a great chain and never feels like one. If like me you feel you deserve better than sterile Starbucks - you'll love this place!
amazing coffee shop just down from Angel. the main reason I love it (other than the coffee obv) is the inside. light shades made of milk bottles and coffee cups and upside down plants hanging of the ceiling.
its the kinda place you'd bring you're books or laptop (free wifi with token) and just sit as fake blood and crystal castles blast out on a rainy sunday morning.
overall good prices, amazing coffee and the food is well cool. (sour chicken soup
Please read eamons review which I must confess is true.
Tho a great little spot if you are after 4hours of private study with the occasional coffee to keep you going
Nice enough place but pretty pricey coffee. Served in paper cups?! If you're a 'cool' kid you'll love this place. Full of second had battered furniture. One major complaint though is that you only get one hour free internet!?!? You can just keep asking for more but why bother when you can go up the road to Starbucks for cheaper/better coffee and unlimited internet?
I disagree with the coffee snobs. The hot drinks on offer here beat the vast majority of London coffe shops and cafes
It may not quite reach the rarified heights of the dedicated places, but this by no means merits knocking 2 stars off the rating of this fantastic place.
Everything is top notch here, from the friendly staff to the ancillaries (food, cold bevs etc) to all the nice idiosyncratic touches of decor.
Check it out and you may, like me find yourself in here twice a day for your fix!
Under new management this continues to be a great coffee shop and the coffee is great. The only drawback is that the music is usually too loud (and not always to my taste) and, since I come here to work, most times I can't stay more than an 40 minutes before the music "drives" me out of the shop... :-)
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