It seems unfair to call The Press Room a chain, since there are precisely two branches, the Surbiton original and today’s Coffee Spot, in Twickenham. Both are close to railway stations and they’re also at opposite ends of the 281 bus route. I visited the Surbiton branch in June 2013, almost exactly a year after it opened in 2012, while the Twickenham branch opened in the summer of 2015. It’s taken me slightly longer to visit this one, a mere three years, but it was worth the wait!
The Press Room occupies a bright corner on London Road in Twickenham. It’s much bigger than the original, with a simple spacious interior. The basic offering remains unchanged, with a solid coffee offering, including pour-over, plenty of tea and a selection of cakes, with sandwiches and salads if you want something savoury. Originally, The Press Room used Staffordshire’s Has Bean, but switched to Cornwall’s Origin when Twickenham opened.
The Resolute Blend is the mainstay on espresso, where it’s joined by Origin’s seasonal decaf. There are usually two offerings on pour-over through the V60 which change every few months. During my visit, these were a pair of Nicaraguan single-origins, one washed, the other naturally-processed.
You can read more of my thoughts after the gallery.
You’ll find The Press Room on the south side of Twickenham station, on the corner of London Road and Holly Road. While the original is a short dash across the road from Surbiton station, here Twickenham station is maybe a three-minute walk. Although you can get between the two by train, it involves changing whichever route you take, so you might be better off catching the 281 bus. As a bonus, you can stop off along the way at Kingston to say hello to Beanberry Coffee and again at Teddington (to visit Woof Coffee), which is precisely what I did.
Bigger and brighter than the original, the Twickenham branch is twice as deep as it is wide, with the narrow side facing London Road (the front). This is all floor-to-ceiling windows, while the first third of the left-hand side (which runs down Holly Road) is also windows, with the door at 45⁰ on the corner. If you don’t mind the busy road, there are four tables in front of The Press Room on London Road’s broad pavement which catch the morning sun.
Inside, each set of windows has a window-bar, with six high stools along the front and four down the left-hand side. The counter occupies the first half of the right-hand wall, stopping short of the windows at the front. Meanwhile, the spacious interior is filled with well-spaced tables split into two distinct groups.
At the front, opposite the counter, are six two-person tables, fixed to the floor, each with two long benches, also fixed in place. There’s a solitary one near the door, then a pair of tables, before a final row of three tables after the end of the window-bar.
At the back, there’s even more seating, a padded bench running down the left-hand wall, with seven two-person tables, although these are often pushed together to form pairs. Parallel to this, an eight-person communal table occupies the centre, while on the right are four two-person tables arranged in a square beyond the end of the counter. Unlike the tables at the front, these have chairs and they’re also not bolted to the floor. Finally, against the back wall, three comfortable chairs surround a low coffee table.
The décor is similarly simple, with a wooden floor and whitewashed walls/ceiling. Although it’s bright at the front, there’s plenty of light fittings at the back.
After a day of espresso, I had an afternoon flat white to end my day, something of a rarity for me in recent years. Expertly-pulled on the three-group Black Eagle and served in a classic red tulip cup, it was lovely, the Resolute Blend, as ever, going really well with the milk, providing a very sweet, smooth cup. I paired this with a peanut butter brownie, a rich, chewy concoction packed with peanuts, although it did give me a bit of a sugar rush!
While I was there, I ran into David, the owner, who I’d first met when I visited the Surbiton branch in 2013. I pointed out that since this had opened in the summer of 2012, while Twickenham had opened in the summer of 2015, we were now due a third Press Room, but in a blow to my belief in simple arithmetic progression, David said there was nothing in the pipeline…
|29 LONDON ROAD • TWICKENHAM • TW1 3SZ|
|www.pressroomcoffee.co.uk||+44 (0) 208 617 9600|
|Monday||07:00 – 17:30||Roaster||Origin (espresso + filter)|
|Tuesday||07:00 – 17:30||Seating||Tables, Window-Bars, Tables (outside)|
|Wednesday||07:00 – 17:30||Food||Sandwiches, Salad, Cake|
|Thursday||07:00 – 17:30||Service||Order at Counter|
|Friday||07:00 – 17:30||Cards||Amex, Mastercard, Visa|
|Saturday||08:30 – 17:30||Wifi||Free (with code)|
|Sunday||09:30 – 16:00||Power||Yes|
|Chain||Local||Visits||8th August 2018|
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