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The Definitive Guide To The Best Independent Coffee Venues In London


3 New Coffee Shops With In-Store Roasters

Kiss the Hippo Coffee
50 George Street, London, TW9 1HJ
‘We want to set new standards.’ Those words from the Hippo’s general manager may sound rather grand, but when you pay your first visit you will see that they really have set out to create something special. The main room is long, decked out with understated colours and a minimal approach to décor. A smaller room upstairs is laptop-heaven (and also houses the training room for both baristas and members of the public).
Downstairs is where they’ve installed a gleaming new Loring S15, splendid behind its glass wall. They roast all their beans there, and the team behind the tech includes some of the industry’s stars. There’s a small menu of sandwiches and baked goods, all made on the premises, if you require breakfast, brunch or just something sweet.
But it’s the coffee, most of all, that makes this place so special. The quality is pretty much flawless. Combine that with unfailingly smiley service and you can see why the Hippo gets busier with every passing month.

Roasting Plant Coffee
4 Borough High Street, London, SE1 9QQ
Walking through the door of the Roasting Plant is like being transported to Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, only with a different bean at its heart. You are immediately hit with a wonderful aroma of freshly roasting coffee, and if you’re lucky you’ll arrive while the Javabot is hard at work roasting a fresh batch. Tall Perspex tubes filled on one side with green coffee and on the other with freshly roasted beans demand your attention, with the automated roaster set between them. The well filled sandwiches make a visit at lunchtime alluring, and the croissants are impossibly buttery and are the perfect treat to accompany the fresh brews.
The space is set up perfectly for solo working, lunch with friends or meetings over a well-made flat white. Seating is plentiful at the back of the room, and a large table near the door is the perfect spot to watch the Javabot hard at work. Choose a fresh single origin for exquisite flavour, or create your own blend by asking for a mix of the beans on offer, and watch your chosen coffee fly through the café in one of the clear tubes, directly to the awaiting Eversys machine. You don’t get much fresher than this!

The CoffeeWorks Project - Here East
Here East, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London, E20 3BS
Here East is a huge complex inside the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park but quite some distance from the Stratford International complex. It's so far away they lay on a free bus service.
If you work at Here East, your chances of visiting CoffeeWorks Project are basically 100 per cent. That's partly because there isn't a whole lot of choice, but in this case, you don't need it. CWP delivers consistent quality across all its branches. 
This is the CWP roastery, and there's an authentically industrial feel to the space. But it's also roomy and light-filled from big windows that run the full length of the room. The food choice is more restricted than at some branches, a short list of sandwiches and the usual baked suspects, but there's plenty to choose from at brunch or lunch. The coffee? Some of London's best. If you're over at bustling Westfield, you'd be doing yourself a favour by hopping on the bus and chilling down Here East.
Ever wondered what the coffee roasting process looks like? Well, wonder no more. Here are 3 new additions to the London Coffee Guide 2019 that have in-store roasters where you can sit and sip your brew while watching the beans go around and around.
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