Posts Tagged With: sandwiches

The Kitchen Works

3-and-half1You’d think you’d have an ample choice of where to go for lunch or coffee, when working in the city centre; but, alas, Aberdeen is a curious place, and after some time you realise there’s only a few venues you’re keen to frequent – at which point any new arrival is a welcome distraction.

I’ve been aware of The Kitchen Works for quite some time (probably soon after its arrival last year), but looking from the outside in, it seemed like a tiny place – and whenever I walked past it (which was hardly a handfull of times), it seemed too busy for a quiet cuppa.

This time, however, I was finished with a meeting and wandering up Union Street at this funny time of “late enough after breakfast, but too early for lunch” – or, in other words: “a coffee would do just nicely”.

Even though the biting winter cold did not encourage long walks, I still decided to venture to the Works, to give my escapade a bit more purpose (coffee research, no less) – and was very surprised to learn that the venue was actually huge, extending far from the narrowish entrance.

Mocha at The Kitchen Works

Mocha at The Kitchen Works

It was also very clean and minimalistic, seeming a bit incomplete, but still harnessing a good dose of charm. The sandwich and cake selection was matchingly scarce, but at least there was hot soup in the pot; more importantly too, mocha appeared on the drinks menu which is all I was after. I made my order and took a seat on the bench by the wall on the right; at this time of day, there were plenty of tables to choose from anyway.

Some time after, the coffee arrived, delivered by the barista’s somewhat uncertain hand; the sight of it didn’t fill me with confidence either, as it resembled more of a cup of cocoa… and tasted like one too.

A bit too hot on arrival, at first I thought the coffee was on the mellow sweet side; but as the brew cooled down a bit, I figured it actually tasted more milky than chocolatey. It had a bit of a caffeine punch to it, but lacked a balance of flavours or smoothness of texture.

Despite that, it was still quite a pleasant drink, even though not the best mocha I’ve had; but if you’re after a bit of peace and quiet in the city – either to do some work on the laptop or to catch up with a friend – you certainly wouldn’t feel out of place or sorts at the Works. Definitely worth a try – who knows, this might turn out to be your new lunch destination of choice!

Mocha: £2.75

Verdict justification: Nice venue in the centre with good coffee – worth a visit

The Kitchen Works website

Categories: Aberdeen, Cafes, Local, UK | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Parx Cafe


Having lived in this city for more than three years now, you’d think I’d know all of its coffee secrets – but, alas!, Aberdeen still throws up a surprise in some of the most unexpected places. Parx Cafe was one of those revelations.

I was strolling down Robislaw Terrace, just out of a meeting and on my way back to the office, when I noticed the A-board – and then the cafe down the steps from it. The name sounded familiar – quite possibly having seen it in one of online reviews for Granite City’s best breakfast offerings; or maybe I had noticed it before on one of the rare occasions I had been walking in this area, but never paid it much heed before.

But when I saw it this time, my first thought was: this place looks cool; my second thought was: this street – the start of a long chain of business’ HQs – really needs a venue like this, with no other cafe that I’d know of, closer than Union Street; and my final thought was: it’s coffee time!

Mocha at Parx Cafe

Mocha at Parx Cafe

As I walked down the steps and through the door, the second thought was instantly confirmed: the spacious venue had almost all seats taken by suit-and-tie folk. The place itself was fresh, open and simplistic, but offering a great selection of tasty looking home made sandwiches, cakes and breakfast options; you could even pick up fresh strawberries and cream for a healthy morning option.

I settled for a mocha and went for one of the few remaining seats (by a huge table that could host a family dinner) – just after pouring myself a cup of water that I simply knew would be there on the condiment bar – I could tell this was the kind of place to offer this.

The coffee arrived some minutes later, and that curbed my excitement a bit – the frothy layer of milk heavily sprinkled with cocoa made me a bit weary of what lay underneath. Thankfully, appearances were deceiving in this case: the Parx mocha packed a punch, with a sweet, rich chocolatey taste, which was not sickening, however. It was a very moreish cup, and its only small minus was the texture, as noted upon arrival – that layer of froth compromising on the smoothness throughout.

If this had been my local work cafe, I would be pretty content with both the food options and – maybe more importantly – the coffee, as a lunch break at Parx would be a proper treat – and one to crave for time and time again!

Mocha (regular): £2.90

Verdict justification: Great venue with tasty coffee and ample food spread – what else do you need to complete the daily business routine!

Categories: Aberdeen, Cafes, Hidden, UK | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

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