I was here exactly a year ago from today during Christmastime! My friend and I stepped in to get out of the cold, being Americans unused to the icy weather who were strolling in the markets and numb from the weather!
Now, I typically don't go to Starbucks unless the holiday drinks are out, so keep that in mind...
What I liked about this Starbucks was that it was situated near a bridge and across the Camden river from the markets. It was also really charming on the inside (definitely too small though for the massive crowds) and nicely decorated for Christmas. I have to hand it to the employees: despite the massive crowds, they got me my drink at a very good pace!
I ordered the gingerbread latte and Starbucks is known for being very consistent with their drinks, so it wasn't particularly different from any other Starbucks gingerbread latte I've had in the past.
Good memories here!
Probably one of the best Starbucks locations in the world. Or at least the UK! Had a medium coffee frappucino. Epic.
What makes this Starbucks location special is the lockside location with a rooftop terrace that over looks it. Or the downstairs outside area that gives you the opportunity to people watch until your hearts content.
The inside seating area isn't so great being a bit cramped and having a school room feel to it with poor lighting. This is unless you can snag one of the comfy chairs by the windows.
Coffee and food are of course the usual Starbucks fare.
I like this starbucks.I love starbucks in general (although I know I'm not supposed to, full fat milk, sugary syrups, globalism etc etc) But this one is in a great location, so that if you sit outside you can look at the canal or watch the wierd and wonderful world of Camden rolling by.
As Starbucks go whether your a fan or not, this is a good one to start with!
For starters, let me tell you that I am a regular Starbucks costumer. The reason for this is easily explained by the fact that the hot brews served at Starbucks are always delicious, as are the sandwiches and desserts.
Also, the employees are very frendly and the atmosphere is delightfully relaxed.
This particular Starbucks is petite and perfectly located by the canal going through Camden Town, why there is a great view of the this canal from the cafe, which is one of the reasons why I enjoy going to this place when I am need of caffeine and muffins.
I had real problems with the staff here, who I found were really rude and misinformed, including the manager. And the joint is very small, and generally always crowded so if you're looking to spend a couple of hours getting through some work don't go here.
Who'd have thought that a coffee shop could dream to organically expand from the inert machinations of a single locale and turn into a globally recognisable brand floating on New York's NASDAQ in a short lifespan.
Starbucks is the largest coffeehouse company in the world with 15,012 stores in 44 countries.
In the 1990s, Starbucks was opening a new store every workday and continued at this relentless pace throughout most of the early part of this century.
It's growth has slowed somewhat in the America and Britain, but it has targeted emerging markets.
It has sold the American ideal of a cup of coffee to every nation on this planet.
Perhaps that is why it is also seen as a bit of a monster. Cafe's in the traditional sense are usually places of quiet reflection and safe refuge away from the breakneck world of acquisitions, mergers, stocks and shares.
Starbucks, instead, is the coffee shop Leviathan. A creature on the rampage. The United States of Coffee. Only recently slowed down by the economic climate at large.
Still, reasons for its popularity, is that, unlike pretentiously arty coffee shops that require you to wear a beret, and smoke a cigarette in a holder (and check your pockets before entry for a copy of Proust's À la recherche du temps perdu - in original French), Starbucks makes no such aspirations.
Starbucks is artifically crass. It is the anti-cafe and harbours no aspirations other than to make coffee big business. It is a business model for unmitigated growth.
It openly sells the idea that it wants every man, woman and child to drink coffee and lots of it, in the hope of making more of a buck.
The magic of the cafe is removed from this soulless place - there is no meeting of minds, no conversations between De Sartre and Beauvoir.
Yet perhaps, that can be a good thing. There's plenty of places were good minds meet, and if you're a touch bohemie and are after trendy beatknick places, you'll know this isn't going to be your bag just by judging from the outside.
This place is for single mothers trying to catch their breath for a moment, career girls and guys reading the Financial Times, or students with toussled hair and an obsessive penchant for cardigans. People with little time to do anything other than order a latte and then get on with their lives. That's the Starbucks model.
Perhaps, we were naive in many ways in thinking a coffee can be enjoyed at leisure - to make a cup of espresso, it takes the farmer to work the land to grow the coffee, the hired hand to prepare it, to ground it, to package it, the sea merchant to ship it over, the welder to weld the metal that makes the coffee machine, the production line assemblers who put it together; all the way up the chain to the bar staff that prepare it using skills they learned over time, to you, the consumer.
Labour - all those sweat and tears and calloused hands, went into making that coffee.
So perhaps, that innocence of casual coffee was merely a mirage and the reality is that smart, quick draw cafe's like Starbucks are the survivors of a race to bring you your tea-time drink.
A race and one that Starbucks is leading.
It's all about economics and post industrial revolution -this is Starbuck's world now.
That may be all a bit too much to digest with your cappuccino and amaretto. So, in plain-speak, if you see a Starbucks, ignore the politics that goes with it and make a choice there and then - either go in, place an order, read a paper and go about your daily business -it really does make a good cup of coffee
OR - if you really want to hurt big corporations where it hurts - go to a local shop, buy a coffeemaker and brew your own.
You'll know then and there whether it's more convenient for Starbuck's to do it for you or not.
That's what it ultimately boils down to after all.
This is a starbucks cafe with a difference. Set in the middle of Camden lock market and overlooking the canal. You can enjoy your nice cup of coffee in the rooftop and feast your eyes at the festivities around the market. Good rest stop after a round of shopping!
Great place to have coffee, especially with the camden canals next to it. Tends to get crowded but waits are not that long. If you're lucky, might even win a bag of starbucks coffee beans, like I did!
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