18 best coffee shops and cafés in London we can’t get enough of

Coffee shop culture is king in the capital. Whether you're on the hunt for the perfect deep roast brew, or are looking for somewhere to while away a few hours over coffee and cake, these cracking caffs provide plenty of inspiration.

Updated on • Written By Caroline Hendry

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18 best coffee shops and cafés in London we can’t get enough of

When it comes to London’s drinking and dining scene, trends come and go quicker than you can say cocktails in teapots (trust us, it’s a thing). The capital’s passion for coffee, however, is a constant. Whether it’s served in shops that are serious about sourcing, paired with cakes and pastries that would satisfy any sweet tooth, or enjoyed in some of London’s most Instagrammable cafes (keep scrolling for unicorn lattes), coffee is the lifeblood of many a Londoner.

And such a serious topic should be treated with the utmost respect. We’re coffee-lovers, nay addicts, here at SquareMeal and see it as our duty to suss out some of the best coffee places London has to offer. There are coffee shops that are truly committed to the cause with their own roastery, and others that only serve rocket-fuel-strength cups for the grittiest of London’s coffee-enthusiasts. You’ll find plenty of cafes in London with a view in this list, as well as the best cafes to work remotely, if you’re looking to escape your living room for an hour or two.


And we hate to make it all about appearances but is anyone else a sucker for latte art? The more complicated the design, the better the coffee tastes. Fact.

A really good coffee should be able to standalone in its own right, but if you’re hankering for a bite then these places all offer some fantastic fare to pair with your favourite cappuccino or flat white. Expect top-notch pastries and brunch menus to boot, with most coffee shops offering takeaway options if you need to grab a bite to go. You see, we don’t blame you for wanting to turn your coffee into a full-meal affair.

If you’re looking for somewhere new to get your fix, cast your eye over our favourite coffee shops and cafés in the capital. You really do need to try them out - by any beans necessary (sorry). And if you have a particular place in mind, then you can use the links below to skip to the most relevant section for you.


Best Instagrammable cafes

Aesthetics aside, these Instagram-worthy coffee shops really do all serve some great-tasting coffee - in slightly unorthodox colours. Because sometimes you just have to do it for the ‘gram.

WA Cafe, Marylebone, Covent Garden and Ealing

minimalist interiors and raspberry cake

What: WA Cafe is a Japanese patisserie with three sites in London, including Ealing, Covent Garden and Marylebone. It’s exactly the sort of place that your Instagram feed will love. Immersive yourself amongst a sea of pastel pink tones and minimalist decor while you peruse the counter of beautifully precise cakes, breads, biscuits and desserts. It also serves premium teas and quality coffees which are all served in traditional crockery – just in case your cafe experience wasn’t aesthetic enough.
Where: 32 Haven Green, W5 2NX; 5 New Row, WC2N 4LH; 6 Thayer Street, W1U 3JQ
Book now: WA Cafe Covent Garden

Peggy Porschen, Belgravia

Pink cakes and pink exteriors

Why: One of the first ‘Instagram famous’ cafés, Peggy Porschen draws in the crowds with its soft pink interiors, floral installations and array of cutesy sweet treats and cakes. Head here for shots of espresso or a hot chocolate topped with miniature marshmallows. You can also satisfy your sweet tooth via the likes of a banoffee sponge, orange and almond cake or one of Peggy’s signature macarons, with flavours including raspberry and rose, or elderflower. 
Where: 116 Ebury Street, SW1W 9QQ
Book nowPeggy Porschen Belgravia

Scarlett Green, Soho

Leafy interiors and bar at scarlett green

Why: Although every café under The Daisy Green Collection umbrella score top points for Instagramability (is that a word?), we’re big fans of its flagship venue Scarlett Green in Soho. Huge tropical plants, restaurant and bar seating, neon light fixtures and a serious room-length cocktail bar give this day-to-night restaurant a cool vibe - but it’s got to be best known for its Aussie-style brunches. And the coffee is as good as its banana bread sandwich, which is saying something.  
Where: 4 Noel Street, W1F 8GB 
Book now: Scarlett Green

Greenberry Hill, Belsize Park

The terrace at greenberry hill

What: Greenberry Hill is the sister site to Greenberry Cafe in Primrose Hill and offers the same ‘something for everyone’ menus and casual vibe the brand has become known for. We love the outdoor terrace at the front of the cafe for its green and white gingham-dressed tables and verdant overhanging trees. Pull up a chair and grab a cuppa if you’re in the area.
Where: 205-207 Haverstock Hill, NW3 4QG
Book now: Greenberry Hill

Baudry Greene, Covent Garden

Overhead shot of table, chair and dishes

What: Baudry Greene is a little bit of everything - a cocktail bar, a mittel-European café and an all-day restaurant - but we recommend you pop in for a croissant and a coffee at breakfast time. It serves filter coffee for a very reasonable £2 a pop, or if you’re feeling lavish, treat yourself to an Irish coffee instead. Breakfast items include fresh pastries, breads and buns, as well as classic breakfast dishes like salmon bagels and bacon baps.
Where: 20 Endell Street, WC2H 9BD
Book now: Baudry Greene

Best cafes for serious coffee fiends

If you're a stickler for single-origin, sustainably-sourced, richly roasted coffee, we hear you. We're more than happy to get nerdy about who does the best beans to whether coffee should be served with hot or cold milk. And these coffee shops aren't messing about.

Monmouth Coffee Company, Borough

front of monmouth coffee park street

Why: Monmouth Coffee Company will forever hold a special place in our hearts for a top-notch cup of the good stuff. Its Park Street site is open-fronted all year round so that passers by can catch a glimpse of its well-trained staff managing multiple drip coffee filters at a time (it’s pretty impressive). A great place to take in the buzz of Borough Market over an expertly-made coffee.
Where: 2 Park Street, SE1 9AB 
Book now: Monmouth Coffee Company

The Gentleman Barista, Piccadilly and London Bridge

Gentleman baristas frontage

Why: With numerous sites across London, including its flagship store in Piccadilly, The Gentlemen Baristas has become known as a meeting point across the capital for people to come together over good chat and great coffee. These guys even have their own roastery in East London which is headed up by a qualified Q-grader to ensure every cup is just right. We tilt our hats to you...  
Where: 162 Piccadilly, W1J 9EF 
Book now: The Gentleman Baristas

Milk, Balham

Bright interiors at milk

Why: Milk in Balham does one of the best brunches in South West London – no exaggeration – and was set up by a young Aussie barista back in 2012. As expected, the baristas produce a mean flat white, but also offer a selection of teas, organic juices and smoothies if that's more your thing. Grab a coffee to go or sample the menu at the weekend (if you can stomach the queues).   
Where: 20 Bedford Hill, SW12 9RG 
Book now: Milk

Kaffeine, Fitzrovia

Coffees on counter top

Why: Another venture from an Aussie/Kiwi duo (the Aussies clearly know their flat whites from their lattes) comes Kaffeine, a funky joint in the heart of Fitzrovia. It offers its own latte art courses for up to six people every fortnight while a top-of-the-range Synesso Cyncra machine delivers pitch-perfect coffee every time.   
Where: 66 Great Titchfield Street, W1W 7QJ 
Book now: Kaffeine

Climpson & Sons, Spitalfields

Retro shot of Climpson and Sons

Why: If you’re serious about your coffee, it doesn’t get much more serious than Climpson & Sons. Attracting coffee-holics from across the capital and beyond, Climpson & Sons sources, blends, roasts and grinds its own coffee, while also serving up a selection of homemade cakes and quiches, which are made using locally sourced ingredients. 
Where: 67 Broadway Market, E8 4PH
Book now: Climpson & Sons

Grind, Various London locations

Interiors at Grind

Why: One of London’s most recognisable coffee shop chains (Starbucks, Costa and the like aside of course), the Grind in the title here refers to the freshly roasted and brewed coffee which is served up daily. Try it in the form of a skinny latte, an espresso or various other options, while tucking into smashed avocado and poached eggs on toast or a buttermilk fried chicken sandwich with fries.
Where: Various London locations
Book now: Grind

Ozone Coffee Roasters, Shoreditch

Interiors at Ozone

Why: ‘Coffee for the people’ is Ozone’s slogan, and this artisan roasting coffee shop and café is bang on target. When visiting here, you can expect an industrial space including stripped-back brickwork, weathered tables and hand-painted signs, while you can pretty much order every coffee under the sun. You can also come by for the all-day brunch menu, which features doughnuts with banana miso caramel and eggs benedict on bubble and squeak.
Where: 11 Leonard Street, EC2A 4AQ
Book now: Ozone

Best cafes for remote working

Sure, you could make yourself another cup of coffee at home using your on-its-last-legs machine. Or, you could take yourself to one of these cracking coffee shops and get one of the pros to make it for you. Call it a Friday treat...

Lantana, Shoreditch, Fitzrovia and London Bridge

eggs on muffins

What: All-day Australian cafe Lantana offers chilled vibes and a vibrant menu replete with killer brunches, colourful salads and global dishes. It also serves top quality coffee sourced from independent farms, and roasted by London based roasters Climpson & Sons (also in this list!). It's definitely one of our favourite brunch spots in London, with the likes of corn fritters with halloumi, and BBQ beef brisket hash, on the menu.
Where: 55 City Road, EC1Y 1HQ; 13 Charlotte Place, W1T 1SN; 44-46 Southwark Street, SE1 1UN
Book now: Lantana Shoreditch, Lantana Fitzrovia, Lantana London Bridge

Sam’s Kitchen, Chiswick and Hammersmith

Granola and yoghurt, with interiors shot

What: Sam Harrison’s more casual cafe chain (he’s also the owner of Sam’s Riverside in Hammersmith) is always rammed come the weekend with friends and families slurping expertly made oat lattes. The food is excellent here too, with a focus on local and seasonal ingredients to create classic-with-a-twist breakfast plates (don’t sleep on the crab, poached egg and hollandaise crumpets). A must-visit if you live in West London.
Where: 59-61 Turnham Green Terrace, W4 1RP
Book now: Sam’s Kitchen Chiswick, Sam’s Kitchen Hammersmith

Franze and Evans, Shoreditch

Outside Franze and Evans on a sunny day

What: This small, family run café serves fresh breakfasts, wholesome salads and signature cakes, whilst coffee is kept simple and strong, with beans sourced from Costa Rica and Honduras. Its original site is in Shoreditch, but you can also find outlets at Mare Street Studios in Hackney, and even a site in Tokyo if you're heading that way!
Where: 101 Redchurch Street, E2 7DL
Book now: Franze and Evans

Prufrock, Farringdon

Coffee and porridge

Why: The team behind Prufrock have a simple philosophy: ’Serve coffee and food that makes you happy, with a service that makes you smile’. It also supports small and local producers where possible, including coffee from Square Mile as well as European roasters, with an ever-changing menu for both espresso-based and filter coffees. 
Where: 23-25 Leather Lane, EC1N 7TE 
Book now: Prufrock

Caravan Bankside, Various London locations

Pouring coffee and brunch plates

Why: Caravan has five sites in London, but its bankside restaurant is a great place to set up shop for the day, located on the ground floor of The Metal Box Factory. It’s kept all the building's original 19th century features for a cool, industrial feel, while the coffee bar features a custom-made espresso machine for a truly unique cup. Bring your laptop and find yourself a quiet corner.  
Where: Various London locations
Book now: Caravan 

Riding House Café, Bloomsbury, Fitzrovia and Victoria

Chill and trendy interiors

Why: This cosy all-dayer is more of a restaurant, than a café, but it’s well-suited to working out of the office. Set up camp on one of the sofas at Riding House Cafe or at the long communal table, and order from the menu of brasserie-style dishes, which includes kedgeree and a chorizo hash. Coffees, juices and cocktails (if it’s that kind of day) are all on hand too. 
Where: 43-51 Great Titchfield Street, W1W 7PQ
Book now: Riding House Cafe FitzroviaRiding House Cafe BloomsburyRail House Victoria

Your coffee is lonely without something sweet! Discover the best croissants in London for the perfect pairing to your flat white.

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