From The Straits Times    |

Photo: 123rf

Planning a trip to London? Leave some time free so you can nip to one of these gorgeous coffee shops or patisseries. 

In this list, we curated some of the best places with great vibes, beautiful decor as well as quality coffee and food.

We can’t think of better ways to take a break from sight-seeing or shopping than by pausing to enjoy a cuppa and a slice of cake.

Scroll down to view our list!

Bonus tip: If you’ll be in town from 2-5 April, check out the London Coffee Festival 2020. There will be tasting sessions, live latte art, and food samples.

1) Paper & Cup


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This little coffee nook stands out with its bright blue door and framed windows. Inside, you’ll find humble cakes, croissants, scones and more to accompany your brew.

It’s also a social enterprise coffee shop that reduces wastage by selling second-hand books and supports local artists by giving them a place to sell their works.

We think it’s a perfect spot to grab a mid-afternoon tea break and a photo for the ‘gram before you head off to explore the rest of London. 

Address: 18 Calvert Ave, Hackney, London E2 7JP

2) Rachel’s Nails and Coffee 


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This is one of the cosiest little places on this list. Rachel’s Nails and Coffee is a nail parlour slash coffee bar located in Fitzrovia, a residential neighbourhood in London full of century-old architecture. 

After enjoying a mani-pedi along with a cup of their speciality brew to energise you, take the chance to admire the olden architecture or drop by one of the neighbourhood’s many galleries or old-school pubs.

Address: 34 Windmill St, Fitzrovia, London W1T 2JR

3) Association Coffee


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Association Coffee is an espresso bar where brick walls, wooden floorboards and exposed plumbing all come together to create a hip industrial-chic space.

The selection is constantly being updated every week or so with new guest espressos or single origin coffees.

If you love the coffee there, you can grab a bag of beans from the counter as a souvenir.

While you’re at it, feel free to ask the staff for their recommended brewing methods and tips. 

Address: 10/12 Creechurch Lane, London EC3A 5AY

4) Grind


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While the main feature at Grind is the stellar coffee, you could also get all-day dining or cocktails. It’s the perfect place for an espresso martini.

Cool fact: You can also grab some biodegradable coffee pods for your Nespresso machine that are promised to ‘disappear like magic’ after a couple of weeks in the trash.

There are a bunch of Grind outlets all over London and we love that each outlet is designed uniquely. 

The outlet in the first picture shows Greenwich outlet, which takes on more of a greenhouse vibe, while the outlet pictured above at Soho makes us think of a racy rock-and-roll club.

And then there’s the outlet at Clerkenwell which blows us away with its Parisian art deco style that looks like it belongs in a boutique hotel. We love that there are all these different spaces to experience. Pick one according to your mood.

Address: Check out the different locations on the Grind website


5) AIDA Shoreditch

We’re kind of mesmerised by this Insta-worthy drink. It’s a swirl art rose latte and you can find it at AIDA, a concept store in Shoreditch that sells cafe nosh, homeware, and apparel.

Even if you’re not swayed by the rose latte, this is a lovely spot for some coffee and cake.

We think you’ll feel like you’re in someone’s home as you sip your brew from communal dining tables and nibble on some of the fresh home-baked goods.

Address: 133 Shoreditch High St, Hackney, London E1 6JE

6) Palm Vaults

This cafe looks like it belongs on a Wes Anderson film set. We’re in love with the colour scheme, hanging plants, and cozy nooks around this cafe.

It’s definitely a great place to stop by for some coffee and a bundt cake or two. Some of these look too pretty to eat! 

There’s plenty to do in the area, in Mare St. You could check out the nearby Viktor Wynd museum of curiosities, spend the evening at one of the nearby pubs, or catch a show at the Hackney Empire Theatre.

Address: 411 Mare St, London E8 1HY


Cakes are the specialty here at L’ETO CAFFE. They are created with a lot of care and attention to detail, so that the flavours are balanced.

Just look at this decadent napoleon cake. The flaky pastry layers balance dollops of sweet custard, and the cake is topped with fresh and vividly red strawberries and berries. 

That napoleon cake was just one of many beautiful confections at L’ETO CAFFE. You can also try tarts, macarons, lattes, smoothies, to list a few things off the menu.

The interior looks pretty chic as well, and we can see ourselves spending a long time there to savour the cakes with a cup of coffee and good company.
Address: Check out the different outlets on the website

8) The Espresso Room

The Espresso Room serves artisan coffee with beans sourced from Caravan Coffee Roasters. When trying a cup of the brew, expect a vibrant, juicy acidity with a light floral finish.

There are a variety of cakes and snacks you can grab, such a cookie to dunk that coffee into. You could also order one of the hearty and beautifully plated brunches on the menu.

There are a couple of different outlets, but we think you should check out the flagship outlet at Holborn, which is jungle themed and boasts a cool speakeasy-style bar.

Address: Check out the different locations on the website. The pictures above were taken at the Holborn outlet.

9) Biscuiteers

Here’s one of the most eye catching cafe fronts we’ve seen. This is Biscuiteers, a specialty cafe for frosted biscuits located at Notting Hill. 

We think the biscuits are really well done. At first glance, those lipsticks in the picture above look like the real thing. They make for novel and unique souvenirs too.

You can also order coffee, cakes and an assortment of macarons when you’re there.

Address: 194 Kensington Park Rd, Notting Hill, London W11 2ES

10) Federation Coffee

Federation Coffee is a rustic and cosy coffee shop located in the Brixton Village Market. 

Cool fact: At Brixton Village Market, you’ll find various farmer’s, maker’s or vintage markets, depending on which day of the week you go. (View the event calendar here.)

This cafe serves a bespoke blend of coffee from Curve Roasters, which is located in a local  coastal town in London. 

We also like how the banana bread here soaked in espresso and served with walnuts & marscapone. Delicious and strong.
Address: Brixton Village Cafe, Unit 77-78, Coldharbour Lane, London SW9 8PS

11) Peggy Porschen

It’s hard not to give this striking and pretty pink cafe a second look if you’re passing by it on the street. It’s called Peggy Porschen, and it’s a place for unabashedly girly and delectable cakes. 

This is what it looks like when you roll the Alice in Wonderland tea party, Barbie, and millennial pink vibes all together.

Check out the official Instagram account, you won’t regret it. There is so much love and attention to detail put into everything – not just the cakes and latte art, but also the decor of the place, flower arrangements.
Address: There are two parlours you could visit, check out the locations on the website.

12) Ozone Coffee Roasters

We saved one of the best for last. Ozone Coffee Roasters – located in Shoreditch – has a reputation for being one of the best coffee spots in London. Step inside and you’ll be greeted by a strong aroma of beans being freshly roasted on-site.

You can choose from various yummy cakes on display or order a meal as well. And as for coffee, there is plenty to choose from. From single origin coffees from Ethiopia with lemon, blueberry and white floral notes, or the Empire house blend with hints of nougat, malt and orange, you have plenty to choose from. Make a reservation if you’re going during meal times if you don’t want to wait in line.

Address: 11 Leonard St, Shoreditch, London EC2A 4AQ

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