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Why are there so few coffee shops in SE1?

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Wednesday 15 May 2013 3.21pm
We'll have to agree to disagree. When you start bringing psychology into the taste of coffee, sorry, I pick up my ankles and run...
Wednesday 15 May 2013 4.34pm
Run if you want Edward but psychology is in everything lol ;-). Fine, we'll agree to disagree but if you fancy a very good pizza in London (though obviously not as good as can be found in Italy) then do try one of the two places mentioned, assuming you've not been to either: you might be pleasantly surprised.
Wednesday 15 May 2013 5.29pm
I may have been to Franco Manca, not sure, but will give Donna Margherita a shot. What is it with SE1 at the moment, it has given me 3 bouts of craving in 3 days with all these topics on fish, scallops, pizza, beers...
Wednesday 15 May 2013 5.48pm
Pizza is a bit off-topic but for what it's worth, I defy any Italian to tell me that the pizza from Pizza Pilgrims on Berwick Street isn't every bit as good, if not better, that any available in Italy.

In a way, coffee is a more interesting debate. The vast majority of new places in London have either been opened by Aussies or Kiwis, or are strongly influenced by the highly evolved espresso culture in those countries. Tedious though it was to hear Aussies (in particular) whinge constantly about the lack of good coffee in London, they did have a point up until recently.

Antipodean baristas and coffee aficionados tend to take a dismissive view of Italian espresso standards, which they regard as complacent and having failed to move on and keep up. Like England and football, just because you invent something, it doesn't mean you're best at it. So it's not surprising if Italians take a similar view of 'third-wave' coffee. It's not worse, it's just different.

I've found the standard of coffee in Italy to vary wildly from the sublime to the disappointing. But at least there's always somewhere to go for one. I could tolerate less-than-perfect coffee if the food or surroundings were likeable. SE1 needs more options.
Friday 17 May 2013 11.07am
My particular favorite (and a nice alternative to Italian Espressos) is the Vietnamese coffee served at Caphe House on Bermondsey St.

Especially yummy with condensed milk (ask for a white one, no sugar needed) and an iced one is a treat in the summer.

There is also a (relatively) new "Italian" place on Park Street (opposite Paul Smith) that I quite enjoy.

Otherwise I'm still mourning Monmouth's closure of their Maltby Street shop.
Friday 17 May 2013 11.22am
Bel Ludovic wrote:
Pizza is a bit off-topic but for what it's worth, I defy any Italian to tell me that the pizza from Pizza Pilgrims on Berwick Street isn't every bit as good, if not better, that any available in Italy.

Their pizzas are good, and they use excellent ingredients. But it isn't a wood burning oven what they have on their Ape. I hope they get one for the restaurant they are planning.
Friday 17 May 2013 11.45am
Proper pizzas from wood-fired ovens! i feel a new thread coming on! I would like to put forward Flavours of Naples as a provider of excellent Italian espresso coffee with an almost authentic Italian ambiance (only spoiled by the drab exterior of Borough High Street, south end)
Friday 17 May 2013 12.12pm
boroughpaul wrote:
Proper pizzas from wood-fired ovens! i feel a new thread coming on! I would like to put forward Flavours of Naples as a provider of excellent Italian espresso coffee with an almost authentic Italian ambiance (only spoiled by the drab exterior of Borough High Street, south end)

I note from the photo that they serve Illi coffe: always a good sign!
Friday 17 May 2013 1.18pm
Jules62 wrote:
I note from the photo that they serve Illi coffe: always a good sign!

Not something that would get me rushing in to try, but each to his / her own...

I'd like to put in a shout for Elliot's Cafe, just along from Monmouth. Open from 7am for coffee etc., and more seating. Also satisfies those seeking a bit of 'bare brick vibe' rather than the bland Costabucks environment. Also do t/a.
Saturday 18 May 2013 4.17pm
I am married to a melbournian who got me into coffee, we never have an issue getting ones we like and dont think the area is lacking particularly: bermondsey cafe and scooterworks being favs. I also like sobo very much. I would argue Austrialians perhaps have done more for coffee in London than Italians have actually as many of the places i can think of as exceptionally good are aussie owned i believe such as all press, elliots and the place behind selfrigdes. But interestingly that comes from the italians that moved there. I worked in a Melbourne pizza restaurant that was the first to open in australia and is still going. In the early 2000s, they set me up for barista training which was two weeks full time! At the time i laughed as i was bought up on nescafe instant and didnt get what the fuss was about, oh how times have changed in just 10 years.

I heard some ex-employees; aussies; from monmouth moved to detroit and have set up an exceptionally popular coffee shop with queues around the block.
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