As regular readers may have worked out, my contract didn’t get extended at the start of June, so consequently I haven’t been heading up to Paddington every Wednesday. This in turn means that I’ve been missing my weekly trips to Beany Green. I’m therefore very grateful to the good folks at Beany Green HQ (aka Daisy Green) who have opened a new branch on the South Bank just for me! Since it’s just a few minutes’ walk from Waterloo, I can now get my Beany Green/The Roasting Party fix whenever I come into London. How cool is that?
Tucked in beside the east stairway of the Hungerford Bridge and almost on top of the Look Mum No Hands Pop-up, Bean Green’s container looks like another pop-up operation, but don’t be fooled. I’ve been told that the new branch has a multi-year lease and will be here come rain or shine, fair weather or foul (ie a typical week of a British summer!).
If you’re familiar with Beany Green in Paddington, then this is like a miniature version, with all the same elements that make my ex-regular haunt such a wonderful place, including the mad (in a good way) staff.
June 2016: The container no longer offers sandwiches and wraps, but it does now have a selection of craft beers on tap, plus wine and cocktails. The seating area has also been significant extended, with the benches replaced by picnic tables.
July 2020: Beany Green has reopened, offering a very similar service to before COVID-19. You can see what I made of it when I visited at the start of August.
You can read more of my thoughts after the gallery.
Given its size, the new Beany Green packs an impressive amount in. Compared to nearby Look Mum No Hands Pop-up, it’s about half the size, with even less seating. The colourful container squeezes in the cake display, grinder and two-group La Marzocco. Despite this lack of space, Beany Green serves a reasonable range of cake, including the famous banana bread. In addition to the usual espresso-based drinks, there’s tea, cold brew and iced latte, plus frozen yoghurt and beer, kept cool in an old sink/trough filled with ice.
Talking to barista Joe, who I know from the Paddington branch, I learnt that this is only the start. It had only been open for five days when I visited and there are already plans for more grinders so that the staff can do filter coffee and perhaps decaf in due course.
While the drinks come in takeaway cups, there’s plenty of seating. Beany Green’s made a virtue out of what’s become known as “upcycling”. The seats and tables are made from re-used long, rectangular wooden tubes. A single tube forms a surprisingly comfortable bench, while two stacked together make a long, narrow table.
In front of the container there are two such tables, each with its own pair of benches. There’s also a bar-type construction to the left-hand side of the container, overlooking Look Mum No Hands on the Embankment below. However, according to Joe, the seating’s not quite finished yet, so things might be different by the time you read this. For example, around the other side of the container, I spotted two more of these ingenious wooden building-blocks waiting to be sanded, varnished and pressed into use.
The new Beany Green has many of the same touches that make the Beany Green I know and love in Paddington so great. For example, Beany Green’s brought its own grass, which it’s spread out in front of the container (with the possibility of more in the future), while there are fresh flowers on the tables.
As somewhere to sit, it’s pretty well situated. Despite the passing pedestrians and regular rumble of trains overhead, it’s a surprisingly quiet spot. There’s shade from the bridge, but also plenty of options for basking on the rare sunny day. Having regularly mocked the staff at Paddington for their deck chairs, here they very much come into their own. The new Beany Green has four and I wouldn’t be surprised to see more turn up in the future.
I had my usual, a flat white, which was made using the same lovely Captain blend from Winchester’s The Roasting Party. It’s a sweet coffee that goes really well with milk. Having been told off by Beany Green HQ for not noticing the falafel spinach wraps at Paddington, I felt it would be remiss of me not to have one here, especially since there was just the one left. According to Joe, it even had my name on it (you have to love this personal service!).
This came grilled, something I’m used to now. It was lovely, the soft spinach bread going very well with some really tasty falafel, all gloriously hot.
|HUNGERFORD BRIDGE (EAST) • BELVEDRE ROAD • LONDON • SE1 8XX|
|www.daisygreenfood.com||+44 (0) 7917 052131|
|Monday||07:00 – 19:00||Roaster||The Roasting Party (espresso only)|
|Tuesday||07:00 –19:00||Seating||Benches, Deckchairs|
|Wednesday||07:00 – 23:00||Food||Sandwiches, Cake|
|Thursday||07:00 – 23:00||Service||Counter|
|Friday||07:00 – 23:00||Payment||Cards + Cash|
|Saturday||09:00 – 00:00||Wifi||No|
|Sunday||0900 – 19:00||Power||No|
|Chain||Local||Visits||3rd July 2014|
Disclaimer: In the second half of 2015, Daisy Green, Beany Green’s parent company, launched a bond to fund its future expansion. I invested in this bond, and, like all bond-holders, receive free coffee as a reward. Since then, the bond had been repaid and I have become an investor in Daisy Green as part of a round of further investment funding. This Coffee Spot was published before the original bond was launched.
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