Taylor Street Baristas, The Shed

The opening times, and a grinning skull, taken from the door of Taylor St Baristas, The Shed.Taylor Street Baristas, one of London’s best-known mini-chains, seems to specialise in quirky locations in slightly out-of-the-way places, such as the Taylor Street Gallery, tucked away down an alley behind Monument. The Shed, as its Shoreditch branch is known, is arguably harder find, and is one of the oldest Taylor Street Barista branches.

Housed in an actual garden shed, it’s well-named: a tiny, intimate spot, where the outside seating, in the shape of multiple tables and chairs, easily outnumbers the four seats inside, which are at two bars, one in the window between the two doors and one along the back of the left-hand wall.

Despite its size, The Shed has a decent range of coffee, with two options, plus decaf, on espresso, a single-origin on bulk-brew, and a selection of loose-leaf teas from London’s Postcard Teas. This is backed up with various breakfast goodies and cakes throughout the day.

You can read more of my thoughts after the gallery.

  • Look what I found! A tiny branch of Taylor Street Baristas, hidden away in Shoreditch.
  • This one is known as 'The Shed' and is in back yard of the Vice Building.
  • There's plenty of outside seating to make up for its small size...
  • .... including this amazing, round contraption.
  • There are some more conventional tables out front as well.
  • Useful sign on the door.
  • Inside, and The Shed is really very small. The counter is to the right of you...
  • ... and directly ahead, occupying almost the full width of the back of the store.
  • To the left of the door is this neat two-person window-bar...
  • ... although it's to the right of the door if you come in through the other door in the side!
  • Talking of bars, there's another one against the left-hand wall, right at the back.
  • A sweeping panorama of the interior of The Shed from the bar at the back.
  • Obligatory lighting shot.
  • Gratuitous lighting shot.
  • For somewhere so small, there's a lot packed in, such as these retail shelves at the back...
  • ... while the coffee is kept on a shelf behind the counter.
  • Talking of which, the menu is on the wall to the right as you enter (the front).
  • There's the drinks on the left, with the choice of espresso in the middle...
  • ... while, on the right, there's the bulk-brew filter of the day.
  • A rather blurry shot of the tea selection (all from Postcard Teas).
  • There's cake too, in a large display case under the menus on the right-hand wall.
  • I was there at the end of the day, so there wasn't a lot left!
  • The counter itself is taken up with the espresso machine...
  • ... and its three grinders (house, guest and decaf)...
  • ... beneath which lurk some typical Aussie treats (imported all the way from Down Under).
  • So, to business. Let's see what this espresso machine can do, shall we?
  • I had the guest espresso, a naturally-processsed Costa Rican...
  • ... which I followed up with a sample of the filter coffee, a washed Burundi.
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These days, I seem to visit branches of Taylor Street Baristas through the invitation of Lisa-Laura, who I ran into at last year’s London Coffee Festival. Back then she was managing Taylor Street Gallery and successfully extracted a promise from me to visit. However, when I next ran into her, I learnt that she’d moved onto The Shed, so naturally I had to pop round, calling in just before Christmas.

The Shed’s official address is Clifton Street, although that’s not particularly helpful. Rather it’s in a gated alleyway which runs behind an old warehouse (now offices) that houses the likes of Vice, linking Clifton Street (to the west) and New North Place (to the east). For those who keep up with these things, this is all just around the corner from the new Grind HQ, the roastery and headquarters of another of London’s famous mini-chains which started with Shoreditch Grind.

You can get to The Shed from either end of the alleyway, although it’s far closer to New North Place, where you’ll find a cluster of tables next to the gate, followed by the Shed itself. It has a simple construction, with a three-panelled front, windows in the two side-panels and a door in the centre. There’s also a window panel and another door in the left-hand wall. Inside, the counter is ahead of you and to the right, while there’s a two-person window-bar in the left-hand panel and another two-person bar against the left-hand wall, beyond the second door. The former is excellent for people-watching, while the latter gets you a perfect view of what’s going on behind the espresso machine. You can guess where I sat!

A bit like the original Grindsmith Pod in Manchester, The Shed might not sound too cosy or welcoming, but it actually is. It made me wonder if I shouldn’t get one for my back garden… The courtyard, by the way, makes for some excellent outside seating once the weather improves.

The Shed has a house and guest espresso, both of which change on a regular basis, usually every three to four weeks for the house and every two to three weeks for the guest. There’s also a bulk-brew single-origin which also changes every two to three weeks. This is all roasted in-house by Taylor Street Roasted, the roasting arm of Taylor Street Baristas.

During my visit, the house was the Benchmark Espresso blend, while the guest was a naturally-processed Costa Rican, which Lisa-Laura suggested I try. I was served a lovely, short, fruity shot. Not the most complex coffee I’ve had, I found it beautifully well-rounded and nicely balanced. I followed that up with a sample of the batch-brew, a washed Burundi. This too was very smooth and fruity, another example of how bulk-brew, when well done, can stand up to pour-over.

If you’re hungry, there’s a selection of cake available all day, plus, in the morning, breakfast staples such as banana bread, bircher muesli, bacon sandwiches and ham & cheese croissants.

110 CLIFTON STREET • LONDON • EC2A 4HT
www.taylor-st.com +44 (0) 20 7929 2207
Monday 08:00 – 17:00 Roaster Taylor Street Roasted (espresso + filter)
Tuesday 08:00 – 17:00 Seating Bar (inside), Tables (outside)
Wednesday 08:00 – 17:00 Food Breakfast, Cake
Thursday 08:00 – 17:00 Service Counter
Friday 08:00 – 17:00 Cards Amex, Mastercard, Visa
Saturday CLOSED Wifi No
Sunday CLOSED Power Yes
Chain Local (+ NYC) Visits 19th December 2016

Why don’t you check out the other branches of Taylor Street Baristas that I’ve visited:

Mayfair
The Gallery (Monument)
Brighton (now closed)


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3 thoughts on “Taylor Street Baristas, The Shed

  1. Pingback: Taylor Street Baristas, Mayfair | Brian's Coffee Spot

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