2014 Awards – Best Saturday Supplement

The front cover of Issue 6 of Caffeine Magazine featuring some chocolate in an espresso cupThe last of today’s 2014 Coffee Spot Awards shortlists is the “Best Saturday Supplement” Award, won in 2013 by Caffeine Magazine. The Saturday Supplement is a place where I can write about coffee, coffee-related events, places which I liked but which didn’t really fit into the category of a Coffee Spot and frankly, anything else that takes my fancy! This Award recognises the best of this year’s Saturday Supplements.

Just so we’re clear on this, the Award is not about my writing (that would be far too self-serving). It’s about the actual subjects that I’m writing about, which this year included coffee festivals, magazines, books, and going for dinner, all of which makes the comparison a little tricky, but that’s my problem!

You can see the shortlist after the gallery.

  • My Newcastle series of Saturday Supplements based on my article for Caffeine Magazine.
  • The London Coffee Fesitval, always good for a Saturday Supplement or two (or seven!)
  • Meanwhile, I managed to cover the Caffe Culture Show in just one Saturday Supplement.
  • This summer, I was at the Bitter Trade launch, a novel set in London's first coffee houses.
  • I also turned my hand at book reviewing with the London Coffee Guide and others.
  • I also tried to be a foodie with an account of my dinner at Caravan King's Cross.
  • 2014 was the year of the Coffee Festival. Next up, Manchester's Cup North 2014.
  • And then there was the first ever Glasgow Coffee Festival...
  • Throughout the year I kept updating my Saturday Supplement on Caffeine Magazine.
My Newcastle series of Saturday Supplements based on my article for Caffeine Magazine.1 The London Coffee Fesitval, always good for a Saturday Supplement or two (or seven!)2 Meanwhile, I managed to cover the Caffe Culture Show in just one Saturday Supplement.3 This summer, I was at the Bitter Trade launch, a novel set in London's first coffee houses.4 I also turned my hand at book reviewing with the London Coffee Guide and others.5 I also tried to be a foodie with an account of my dinner at Caravan King's Cross.6 2014 was the year of the Coffee Festival. Next up, Manchester's Cup North 2014.7 And then there was the first ever Glasgow Coffee Festival...8 Throughout the year I kept updating my Saturday Supplement on Caffeine Magazine.9
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There are nine Coffee Spots on the shortlist this year, all listed in order of publication.

The Ouseburn Coffee Co. logo: the letters OCC above, with 'Ouseburn Coffee Co.' below, separated by a thick horizontal line.

Caffeine Magazine Newcastle Series

Back in February I wrote a series of four Saturday Supplements, based on an extended version of my Caffeine Magazine article on Newcastle. It featured Pumphrey’s Coffee, Ouseburn Coffee Co, Pink Lane Coffee and Flat Caps Coffee.

The London Coffee Festival Logo

London Coffee Festival 2014

The London Coffee Festival has become an annual fixture in my diary and this year I attended for three of the four days. I saw so much I had to write it up over seven Saturday Supplements (although that total included the preview). Topics included a round-up, cups, kit, food, competitions and the coffee itself! Also in the running for Most Popular Coffee Spot.

Doctor Espresso's fully restored and working Gaggia lever espresso machine at Caffe Culture 2014.

Caffé Culture Show 2014

In contrast the Caffé Culture Show is a much more relaxed affair, which I managed to cover in a single day and with a single Saturday Supplement. Nevertheless, I managed to see multiple espresso machines, from lovely vintage lever models to the latest modern technology, plus lots of great coffee!

The front cover of "The Bitter Trade", a novel by Piers Alexander, winner of the PEN Factor

The Bitter Trade

In the summer I attended the launch of the “The Bitter Trade” which was held at Prufrock. The Bitter Trade is a novel set in and around London’s first coffee houses and the launch event included a very interesting and informative talk by Dr Matt Green on the earliest coffee houses. There was also a communal 17th century sing-along and some 17th century coffee!

The cover of the 2014 edition of the London Coffee Guide by Allegra Publishing

The London Coffee Guide and Others

On the back of “The Bitter Trade”, I turned book reviewer and covered three very different coffee-related books. These were The London Coffee Guide, by Allegra Publishing (does what it says on the cover); Coffee Obsession by Anette Moldvaer ( a wonderful introduction to the world of coffee, covering everything from growing coffee to making and drinking it); and Robert Leigh’s From Lime Street to Yirgacheffe (an honest, penetrating insight into coffee growing and production in present-day Ethiopia).

The Caravan King's Cross Sign: "Caravan King's Cross" in black letters on a white background

Dinner at Caravan, King’s Cross

I often cover Coffee Spots that do food, but I rarely mention the food itself, so I thought it was time I did. Hence my first (and only) venture into being a foodie, where I wrote about my (very pleasant) experiences of having dinner at Caravan’s King’s Cross branch.

An espresso being pulled on Foundry's Londinium lever espresso machine at Cup North.

Cup North 2014

2014 was definitely the year of the Coffee Festival and the highlight for me was the inaugural Cup North in Manchester. I attended both days and managed to get four Saturday Supplements out of it, prosaically named the preview, round-up, Part I and Part II. Cup North has also been nominated for the Best Espresso Award, although in fairness that was more down to Sheffield roaster, Foundry.

The Glasgow Coffee Festival Logo for 2014

Glasgow Coffee Festival 2014

Sadly I didn’t manage to get to the first ever Glasgow Coffee Festival, but I did manage to get a Saturday Supplement out of it, writing a nice preview. Seems I missed out on a lovely (but cold) festival!

The front cover of Issue 12 of Caffeine Magazine with the very angular Victoria Arduino Theresia espresso machine

Caffeine Magazine

Finally, we have my ever-updated Saturday Supplement on Caffeine Magazine. I started this back in 2013 and I update it every time a new issue comes out. So, technically, this is a 2013 Saturday Supplement, but hey, my Awards, my rules… This year there were six updates, covering all of Caffeine Magazine’s second year of publication. If I was really clever, I’d split this into separate Saturday Supplements, one for each year that Caffeine Magazine has been going. Maybe next year…


And the winner is Cup North 2014
Runners-up: The London Coffee Guide and Others and Caffeine Magazine

Don’t forget to check out the other 19 Coffee Spot Awards for 2014.


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