The Coffee Hatch, London Bridge

I curse the Coffee Hatch for making me wait for my Monday morning coffee. I was up and about early so thought I would try my chances at London Bridge’s most elusive coffee outlet. Drew at the Hatch has a reputation as one of London’s top coffee connoisseurs, but his opening hours are much less dependable. Needless to say I was excited but pessimistic about my pending visit.

The Coffee Hatch has a small window, both literally and physically from which to retrieve your coffee. Open 8-11am approximately Monday to Friday it is geared around London commuters or the occasional mad coffee lover like me.

My numerical skills came into question when I tried to ascertain the location of number 37, Bermondsey Street, surely somewhere between 45 and 30 and yet nowhere to be found. Turns out the Coffee Hatch is nothing more than an inconspicuous black door when closed, I only had the conviction to stay because I’d looked up the info and pictures online.

At 8.11 am the door slowly opened and the coffee man poked his head out. Perhaps he thought I’d just been hanging around outside for fun because he said surprised, “Oh do you want a coffee?” Umm yes, obviously, can you not see me shivering with pre-coffee desperation?!

The Hatch coffees are made on a La Marzocco machine with Square mile beans and an Anfirm grinder, though Drew sometimes uses a special guest coffee. No food is served. The coffee is carefully filtered and served to the customers specifications. Black or espresso is priced at £2 and ‘white any way’ will cost you £2.50.

I tried my usual Flat White, served short and strong. It was extra creamy with a rich roasted aroma. I can’t stand huge cups of coffee sold extra hot so this cup was ideal for me and I had slurped the final drips within a few minutes.

Hours are erratic at the Coffee Hatch but the coffee never falters. Definitely one of London’s best kept secrets.

37 Bermondsey Street
London SE1
Area: Borough

8-11 am Monday-Friday (ish)

Best coffee in Soho

As a blogger on the go and a coffee fanatic, I am always on the lookout for the best independent coffee houses. Internet and plug sockets are certainly a bonus, but if the coffee is good enough, I’m willing to sit in a cramped corner to enjoy a good blend and brew. Soho is forever introducing new and quirkier cafes, as the city’s centre for good food and drink, I thought it was about time I compiled a list of my top Soho coffee hang-outs.

1. Nude Espresso, Soho Square: Cute and cool, many believe Nude Espresso offers the best coffee in Soho. I was impressed by the silky smooth flat white and the indulgent hot chocolate.

2. Rapha Cycle Club, Brewer Street: For coffee and cycle lovers alike… careful and precise baristas make unrivalled espressos and in the shop trendy cycling gear hangs ready for the more athletic foodies to admire! Huge and light venue ideal for relaxing and reading a book.

3. Tapped and Packed, Wardour Street: My favourite place to write and think… a hazily lit, lazy lounge with low hung lights and wooden benches. Plenty of space to stretch your legs, open your laptop and wile away the afternoon browsing the net. T&P offer a wide range of coffees, so there is variety for picky customers.

4. Flat White, Berwick Street: Another tiny venue and a real coffee destination. If you can bear a crowd, the delicious coffee here really is worth fighting for. Serving a very moreish Square Mile blend.

5. Speakeasy, Lowndes Court: Hidden away behind Carnaby Street, Speakeasy is a fun venue. Great coffee, cool crowd, shame about the lack of plug sockets and internet access (bloggers beware this is not the ideal writing venue). Groovy neon artwork on the walls by Benjamin Jamie.

6. Foxcroft and Ginger, Berwick Street: Filled with arty types F&G serve flavoursome food and good coffee. I love the mismatched chairs and eclectic decor. The welcoming chatter and friendly staff make this cafe a great place to spend time alone or with friends.

7. Milk Bar: This place is hip and happening and has a following of loyal fans. Like its sister branch Flat White, Milk Bar offers a balanced blend of Square Mile coffee. The interior is cosy and familiar, a lovely place to gossip with friends.

Other great coffee houses nearby: New Row Coffee and Kaffeine.