Sunday, 21 May 2017

Buchta

72 Victoria Rd
Glasgow G427AA
»Map«
Open every day except Monday
Espresso & V60
Coffee: Avenue & guests
Also: Meals, beans
Coolness: Czech-inspired bakery items in a neat, friendly package

Buchta is a cosy, friendly coffee shop in Glasgow's South, inspired by its Czech namesake.

According to owners Tomas and Katerina, Buchta has two meanings. Tomas explains: "Generally, you can call all cakes Buchta in the Czech language but it's also the name of one particular cake called Honzikova buchta (John´s Buchta). This is a traditional Czech cake or bun that our grandmas bake for Sunday afternoons. We eat it with nice cup of coffee or tea, or for breakfast with hot cocoa next morning." And this little coffee joint is as warm and welcoming as that description!

They're offering locally roasted Avenue Coffee as espresso and do V60 filter using guest roasters from the Czech Republic. You can also enjoy a selection of loose leaf teas from Chaiovna or hot chocolates from Coco Chocolatier.

Katerina and Tomas make their own cakes, sweet toasts and caraway bread for sandwiches and toasties and offer home made chocolate spread plus the usual jam and peanut butter. Their fillings change constantly and range from central European sausage, sauerkraut and apple-horseradish chutney through to cheddar and onion or mozarella, tomato and pesto.

In terms of seating arrangements, you can expect to be pretty snug with your fellow coffee and cake lovers. High and wide pale timber tables are flanked by benches that you share with your neighbours - in tune with grandma's buchta vibe.

More: facebook.com/buchtacoffeeuk

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Scotland Coffee Lovers App

 Download from the App Store

Download from the Playstore

Our App will help you find the best independent specialty coffee shops in Scotland - quickly and easily, whether you're online or offline.

Your location will show up on our map alongside the best coffee shops - all visited and rated by us. You can choose the coffee shop that suits your style and mood based on the rating, review and photo.

Download our app free from the App Store or Playstore and never have a bad coffee again!

Want to be on our app?
We're always looking to add Scottish high quality, independently owned, specialty coffee shops to our app. We review them all ourselves, an no-one pays to be listed. If you fit the bill, we'd love to hear from you, just drop us an email (scotlandcoffeelovers(at)yahoo.co.uk) or direct message us on Twitter or Facebook.


Why an app?
We're passionate about Scotland's independent coffee shops and want to support them by driving customers through their doors. With location services, our App makes it easy for you to find your way to the best coffee shops Scotland has to offer.

We've been reviewing indy coffee shops in Edinburgh since 2008 and have recently been inspired to expand to the whole of Scotland. Over coming weeks and months we'll load up more shops and we're working to improve how the App functions.

Our App works offline so visitors who don't have a UK phone can download it while they're on WiFi and still use it when they're offline.

You'll also stay up to date with the best coffee shops as they open across Scotland, Edinburgh and Glasgow - as your App will be updated regularly.

We'll continue to refine our App as our coffee scene evolves.

It All Started Here

75 Deanston Dr
G41 3AQ
Glasgow
»Map«
Saturdays & Sundays
Espresso & batch brew
Coffee: Guests

Coolness: Some of the best guest roasters around

It All Started Here (5♥) is William Heenan's specialty coffee shop - a welcome evolution from his much loved coffee pop-up stall that has been doing the rounds at Glasgow outdoor markets and events for several years.

It All Started Here is all about high end specialty coffee while also being friendly and inviting. They'll be hunting around for the best constantly changing guest roasters alongside their long time favourites Sheffield based Foundry Coffee Roasters and London's Workshop and Caravan. You can expect "lots of naturals, lots of Arfican coffee, lots of fun, interesting tasting notes and (hopefully) sweet, juicy, fruity brews."

They're also serving Edinburgh's Pekoe Tea and aiming to get food on the menu soon.

Located in Shawlands just near Queen's Park, it's very early days so we'll be back with more soon - but wanted to get It All Started Here listed asap, now that Will has his new permanent home!

More: http://facebook.com/allstartedhere

Monday, 8 May 2017

Curated Brew - An interview


I caught up with Ian Kissick, founder of Curated Brew, to find out what’s unique about his specialty coffee subscription service.

The number of small batch coffee roasters has been on the dramatic increase over the last few years (mixed in with older traditional roasters reinventing themselves) and new coffee subscription services have also been popping up regularly.

I was intrigued by the name - and the concept of ‘machine learning’ - so had a good long chat with Ian.

What's the deal?

Ian started Curated Brew, leaving a corporate IT role behind, at the end of 2016. Despite only taking up coffee in 2012, Ian’s making up for lost time and has definitely joined the ranks of the obsessed. He wanted combine his background in technology (coding) with his new-found love of specialty coffee.

He’s particularly drawn to juicy, bright, interesting flavours at the upper end of the specialty coffee market – and variety. The problem is shipping costs - which quickly make sourcing these coffees from all over Europe un-affordable, even for the seriously dedicated.

So, in a nutshell, Ian does a wholesale deal with a single, carefully selected roaster each month, and ships you delightful coffee that would otherwise cost nearly twice as much if you ordered a bag directly from the roaster due to shipping costs.

You’ll get a tip top bag of beans delivered to your address for a maximum price of around £12 a 250g bag (slightly less if you buy more than one bag) and some helpful accompanying notes about the coffee to read while you sip.

To get your taste buds yearning and as an indicator of quality, last month’s roaster was Norway’s Talor and Jorgen, and May’s is Sweden’s Koppi. Yup.

So what’s the deal with ‘machine learning’?

Ian is creating a database, based on customer ratings of the sensory aspects of the coffee they’ve tried. He’ll feed that into a machine learning model based on thousands (and 10s of thousands) o customers’ feedback to understand the underlying factors that people are enjoying.

In 2 years, Ian’s planning to offer 2-3 roasters over 10 origins, with different characteristics, and he’ll know the likelihood of who will like which coffees and recommend them accordingly - based on previous feedback.

He’s also aiming to tie in with a university to research how peoples’ coffee palette changes over time, to offset unintentionally getting stuck in a flavour profile rut slash vortex ongoing.

How do you choose the roasters you feature?

When Ian set out in January 2017, he looked at all the speciality roasters in UK and Europe that he was interested in and emailed them. He asked for samples, cupped them and made a list of 10 he wanted to work with immediately. Some were start-ups others were more established companies. Going forward Ian will ask for samples from roasters and then cup and choose them together – as well as bringing others in to help choose as well.

Ian said “I like trying different coffees. It’s a comfort and a pleasure, but it’s also intriguing whenever you try a coffee with a different sensory profile. The people who are signing up so far are generally looking for something different. Because of the price point, we’ll rarely feature highly expensive coffees, but we’ll always feature interesting coffees at high quality - generally a light roast.”

Ian’s trying to meet with as many roasters as possible to taste their coffees with them. He wants to get their take on the coffees they have on offer, chat them through and make decisions together about what suits his customers.

We were lucky enough to try the Talor & Jorgen, fully washed Rwandan Musasa (pictured in super lovely artwork) and will be back to try another soon - alongside supporting our local roasters heartily of course (in fact I passed a few names of our fine Scottish roasters to Ian for consideration!).

Monday, 1 May 2017

Kelvin Pocket

72 S Woodside Rd
G4 9HG
Glasgow
»Map«
Open every day
Espresso
Coffee: Climpson & Sons
Also: Meals, cakes, beans, fresh juice
Coolness: Spacious and laid back on the River Kelvin

The Kelvin Pocket (4♥) provides breakfast, lunch and cakes and is situated at the bottom of the Kelvinbridge stairs, adjacent the Kelvinbridge Underground.

These folks ply coffee from the well-established and highly regarded East London company Climpson & Sons - available to sit in, takeaway or take home with various beans to choose from.

As the name describes, the cafe is tucked in a little pocket, a little sun trap in the afternoon with outdoor seating. There's plenty of seating inside and outside the cafe with a lovely laid back spacious feel and nothing is ever to much for the fantastic staff.

Inside the counter displays an amazing array of ever-changing cakes with some popular ones making a reappearance from time to time. The food menu changes daily, keeps in season and is sourced locally. This ranges from soaked oats and berries, smoked salmon bagels, various filled fresh sandwiches, soups and salads all made on site.

More: facebook.com/kelvinpocket/

Post written by Leanne Graham
- Instagram @glw.coffee.snob & peaceandjam1


Saturday, 15 April 2017

Kaf Coffee

5 Hyndland St
G11 5QE
»Map«
Open every day
Espresso, pour over
Coffee: Guests
Also: Meals, cakes, beans
Coolness: Lovely food cooked on premises

Kaf Coffee (5♥) is a small and perfectly formed coffee bar and bakery in Glasgow's West End area.

Specialty coffee reigns supreme here and visitors can expect to enjoy a constantly changing menu of pedigree roasters. Week to week choices will vary, but some of these names will give you an indication of the treats you're in for: Fortitude, Workshop, James Gourmet, Union and many more to come.

Kaf offers high quality pour over and espresso based coffees - made to exacting standards. You can also pick up coffee merch such as Colonna coffee capsules (Nespresso compatible compostable coffee pods), Keep Cups, pourover and aeropress kit and filters as well as some smart, Scandi-inspired cups and what nots.

While this is a wee shop that seats 9-10 people inside and a couple more out front, owner Leo is managing to produce some stand out food on site. In many cases for a shop of this size, the coffee would be the primary focus but Leo's managing to produce food to an equally high standard.

Meals will vary and include all day breakfast until 4pm of Scandi plates (e.g.boiled egg, bacon, cheese, new potato, hummus, sourdough, fruit and granola with yoghurt), breakfast rolls, porridge and grilled cheese sandwiches. And additional lunch options include a wide range of whole food sandwiches (e.g. ingredients include felafel, tuna nicoise, hazelnut pesto, pastrami). And the cakes, custard tarts, brownies, biscuits, puff pastry tarts and more that are on display are pretty much eye poppers.

Owner Leo brings to Kaf the skills and knowledge she's gathered through considerable time in some of Edinburgh and Glasgow's best specialty coffee houses. And has now set up her own offering that is a unique combination of food and coffee that's all her own.

And we love the 'KAF Coffee Glasgow' branding and tote bags - bravo.

More: facebook.com/kafcoffee/

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Noir

4 Palmerston Pl
EH12 5AA
»Map«
Open every day
Espresso
Coffee: Horsham Coffee & many guests
Also: Cake, pastries, soup, sandwiches
Coolness: Revolving single origins in an elegantly modernised Georgian space

Noir (4♥) provides high quality, single origin coffee in Edinburgh's West End, a couple of blocks past Shandwick Place as you head out of the city.

You can choose from regularly changing single origin guest beans - with attributes happily explained by the barista - and their house bean, which is the distinguished West Sussex-based Horsham Coffee.

The owner is looking to get the balance right between offering coffee that's genuinely different and pushes the boundaries a bit, while also providing some familiar favourites for customers. As you'd expect with this vision, not only are the beans top notch, so too is the technical capability of the baristas making your coffee.

Given it's fantastic Georgian exterior and inviting chunky stone stair and balustrade, it seems appropriate to mention that Edinburgh has a habit of changing the name of the same street multiple times in quick succession (which is very confusing for visitors). So according to the street sign on the front of the building it's simultaneously on Coates Place and Atholl Place. Palmerston Place runs down the other flank of the shop toward the towering St Mary's.

The focus on quality also resonates through the food, with soups from Souped Up, sandwich-panini type delights and delux charcuterie platters. A wide range of pastries and cakes are also available, of course.

The decor is elegant, with enough austerity not to detract from the grandness of the Georgian high ceilings, decoration and massive windows. The black and white floor tiles and quasi Japanese dark wood framing the servery area add to the wow-factor (while tying in with the shop name) in this large space that provides a good number of comfortably-spaced tables and chairs.

More: facebook.com/Noir-Coffee