Best of Paris: Coffee & Chocolate Part 2

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After an unbelievably good breakfast at Hardware Societe, featuring espresso based beverages from Melbourne based coffee roasters Padre Coffee, we made our way across town to 10 Belles for some filter coffee. Continue reading

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Best of Paris: Coffee & Chocolate Part 1

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Paris, the capital of all things couture, was one of the later adopters of specialty coffee, but it’s a scene that has blossomed so significantly that it’s impossible to visit all of its cafes in a week, never mind a short trip. As a city of romance, it’s clear that Parisians have fallen in love with lighter roasts and distinct expressions of terroir, just like they have with wine, cheese and chocolate. There’s a very definite offering of all things distinguished and there’s a shop selling something interesting on nearly every street. Strolling the boulevards, parks and galleries it’s easy to be enchanted by the city as you make it from one destination to the next. Continue reading

Best of Barcelona Coffee Part 2

Caravelle

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Waking up the next morning we were in need of some breakfast with our coffee and so headed to Barcelona stalwart Caravelle. A kitchen, a bar, a makeshift office, Caravelle provides a lot alongside brewed specialty coffee, which is no doubt why it’s so popular. Entering in we picked up a table in the centre of the room and browsed the menu for some food, while ordering a couple of cups of the Burundi Gahehe on filter from NOMAD coffee. Continue reading

Best of Barcelona Coffee Part 1

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Barcelona might not be the capital of Spain, but many have called it the cosmopolitan or cultural capital before and it’s not hard to see why. Modern, but traditional, Barcelona is big on its Catalan heritage, but it also embraces progression and that’s why you can find a whole host of specialty coffee across the city, especially quality cold brew given the frequent sweltering summer temperatures. While this isn’t a comprehensive list of Barcelona’s specialty coffee purveyors, it is a list of the ones I managed to fit in over a few days exploring the city. Continue reading

Best of Warsaw: Coffee & Chocolate Part 1

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Warsaw’s a bit of an understated city, it’s not big or flashy or spending millions on promoting itself as a destination with the best of everything or even as the most ‘authentic’ Polish experience. It doesn’t talk a particularly big game and before going I wasn’t overly aware of it as a specialty coffee destination, it’s not Berlin or Oslo obviously. It is, however, flourishing, with culture, authenticity and specialty coffee and not just in the ‘hip’ districts, it’s spread all over and accessible to everyone. Absolutely everybody is making hand brewed coffee and no one is making a big deal about it, they just like the good stuff, because well, it’s good. Continue reading

Best of Oslo: Coffee Part 2

Hendrix Ibsen

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Just a step outside of Oslo’s Mathallen building is a coffee shop that owes its name to Henrik Ibsen a Norwegian playwright and poet and the universally beloved Jimi Hendrix, which I guess speaks of both home and music a theme that encompasses this cafe. Entering the place, it feels like a hangout space, walls lined in equal parts by records, art and bags of retail coffee beans, with nothing looking out of place. Continue reading

Best of Oslo: Coffee Part 1

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There’s a dedication to coffee in Oslo that you don’t often see in other cities, where the coffee itself is the thing that is respected and revered. At times it feels like you’re more likely to find a specialty coffee shop than you are a second wave coffee chain and while you might find coffeeshops selling cocktails, tea and even records, the main focus is always on the coffee. There’s no avocado instagram lifestyle with coffee as the afterthought here, just seasonally roasted coffee and casual but informed service. In a country where the Janteloven is still heavily woven into their culture these coffeeshops might downplay their successes and achievements, but with Norwegians drinking more coffee than everyone except the Finnish, it’s maybe not surprising to find that they place it on such a high pedestal.

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