Saturday, 7 January 2012

Stokes High Bridge Cafe

Visiting friends in Lincoln, I insisted on ducking in to this brilliant little shop with pride of place on Lincoln High Street. It came back in to my thoughts in September after it was nominated for an award at the Beverage Standards Awards, and it's been on my hit list for my next visit. I've known about it since I was a very small boy, having grown up just outside the city.

The building itself is remarkable. Located on a medieval bridge over the River Witham, the structure's earliest bits date from the 1500's! Stokes themselves have similar provenance, dating from 1902. Everything else seems remarkably fly-by-night by comparison! Walking in to the half-timbered service counter you are greeted by a rack groaning with coffees and teas, a beautiful looking Sanremo two group machine and a friendly welcoming Olde Worlde atmosphere. It's really quite busy. We found a high seat and, after admiring the teapot lampshades, ordered our drinks, embarrassing my friends by grilling the server about their blend. He brought me a pamphlet explaining that all their coffee is roasted in-house and their espresso is a blend of Colombia and Stokes Continental Roast. I went for my default standard: flat white (pictured above.) Nice latte art and well presented, but I must confess to being a bit disappointed by the flavour. A bit sharp, a touch metallic, not the full, rounded flavour I was looking for. Maybe a touch under extracted, maybe the grinds sat in the chamber for a while - who knows! Not important really, the atmosphere and the setting warrant a repeat visit - so next time I'm in Lincoln it's still on my list! JE Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

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