Usually I know exactly what I want and where I want it – at least when we’re talking coffee (because in other life aspects I can be really indecisive). I plan my visits based on other’s suggestions or own observations, and – whether or like it or not – I go in with some preconceptions.
This time was different. I had just finished filming an interview with Mark Greenaway at his No.12 Picardy Place restaurant , so having been exposed to and talking about food I was rather ravenous, especially that I had skipped breakfast. I knew I had to have something substantial, i.e. more than a cup of coffee, and have it fast too. I decided to walk down Broughton Street, as I hardly ever venture in that area, apart from my last trip to Artisan Roast.
I remembered there was a place recommended by The List there called Broughton Deli, but I didn’t seem to be able to find it; in the meantime, I walked past The Bakehouse Co. that caught my eye. After a few more minutes of looking around, I decided not to keep my rumbling stomach waiting any longer and shyly walked into this enigmatic place.
Of course, there was nothing mysterious about it – well, maybe the fact that I had not heard anyone shout about it from the rooftops, as it deserved, I learnt that morning.
The cosy inside was not too big but big enough to give one some privacy – I think high ceiling helped a bit as well. Cakes and tray bakes as well as “raw” resources: loaves of bread, jars of marmalade and salad stuff on display suggested that fresh food was made on the premises and the menu would suit both a breakfast or a lunch person in equal measure, with choices of sweet and savoury items. Despite the stomach demanding TLC, I decided to be good and only had a wholemeal toast with jam – plus, of course, a mocha.
The barista was a genuine treasure: naturally friendly, smiling and patient as I was fighting with my conscience deciding between the toast and a croissant. She had this calm nature of a neighbourhood coffee-shop girl, but not the annoying apathetic type that looks like she might pass out in the middle of service. She was also the one to make my coffee and deliver it to the table with a charming but modest smile.
I could feel good vibes emanating from that cup – and it was a big one. From the first look you could tell it was quality: shiny, even texture on top, and nothing of a frothy foam mishap. The texture throughout was immaculate, smooth and creamy, and of a pleasant temperature. There was a good balance between the coffee and the chocolate, although I have to admit that after having some of the toast with apricot preserve on it, the drink seemed to lose some of its sweetness – but that’s what you get from improper coffee-food pairings, so my bad.
Considering the price, the size and the service, this is definitely a place worth going to, over and over again, and although I can’t speak for the surroundings and what else Broughton Street has to offer, I could envy its locals this little gem of a coffee shop right at their doorstep. Pure pleasure!
Verdict justification: Simply nothing to wrong it!