Head Shot Coffee, Palackého

A V60 of a Kenyan single-origin served by Head Shot Coffee in a carafe on a wooden tray, with the cup of the side, along with a glass of water.Head Shot Coffee is a chain of precisely two coffee shops, both of which are in within spitting distance of each other in Prague’s Nové Mĕsto. I escaped to both locations for afternoon coffee during the week I spent working in Prague earlier this year. Of the two, Palackého, which opened in 2017, a year after the original, was the one I favoured. A bright, open space bordering onto the delightful Františkánská Zahrada (Franciscan Gardens), there’s a sheltered courtyard with four outdoor tables, while the L-shaped, window-lined interior has another six tables.

Head Shot uses Prague-based Respekt, supplemented by various guest roasters. During my visit, there was a single-origin Colombian on espresso, served from a standard menu (including iced options), plus pour-over through the V60 and batch brew. Both filter options used the same Kenyan single-origin while I was there, again from Respekt.

If coffee’s not your thing, then in keeping with many Czech coffee shops, there’s a small selection of soft drinks and wine. Meanwhile, if you are hungry, there’s a range of cakes and pastries, which are more aligned to the offerings of a Central European cake shop than a traditional western coffee shop (think cheesecake over brownies).

You can read more of my thoughts after the gallery.

  • On the corner of two light-filled corridors in Prague's Nové Mĕsto, it's Head Shot Coffee.
  • This is one of the corridors, which runs behind Head Shot...
  • ... and this is the view if you approach from that direction.
  • It doesn't look that promising, but keep going and you'll find Head Shot on the right.
  • The second corridor is much shorter and runs down the side of Head Shot.
  • The broad entrance at the end opens onto a large, sunny courtyard...
  • ... where Head Shot has its outside seating.
  • Back inside and the door to Head Shot is immediately to your left.
  • Let's go in, shall we?
  • The counter is directly opposite, with seating off to the left.
  • There are two tables here, one to the left of the door, and another in the window.
  • The one to the left of the door seats two...
  • ... while the other one seats three and looks out into the courtyard...
  • ... with a great view of the outside seating, which consists of four four-person tables.
  • There's more seating to the door's right, starting with a two-person table in front of the...
  • ... big red pillar. The seating, and the counter, continues, extending off to your left.
  • There's another two-person table after the pillar, with the...
  • ... seating along the back of Head Shot forming an L-shape along with the counter.
  • There are two more three-person tables back here.
  • A view of the L-shaped counter, as seen from the corner.
  • There are lots of nice touches in Head Shot, including these books and games...
  • ... while I was really taken with the decoration to the left of the door.
  • And then there were the light-fittings, with each table having its own lamp.
  • Each lamp has a disk-shaped lamp shade (of sorts)...
  • ... with an exposed light bulb beneath it.
  • The view from below.
  • Down to business. You order at the counter, which greets you as you enter.
  • Off to the left is the chiller cabinet, witha selection of cakes, savouries and soft drinks.
  • For example, there's a range of pre-prepared sandwiches...
  • ... and some rather splendid-looking mini pavlovas...
  • ... along with these cream-filled biscuits.
  • There are brownies and more biscuits on the top of the counter...
  • ... with chocolate at the other end.
  • The menu, meanwhile, is on the wall behind the counter, the coffee arranged in columns...
  • ... while the three-group Black Eagle espresso machine is at the back under the menu.
  • The coffee is from local roasters, Respekt, with occassional guest roasters.
  • On my first visit, I had an espresso, made with a single-origin Colombian...
  • ... while on my return, I had a V60 of a Kenyan single-origin...
  • ... served in a carafe, with the cup on the side, plus a glass of water...
  • ... all presented on a wooden tray. Normally I'd leave you here, but since Head Shot...
  • ... is rather hard to find, here are some directions. The most direct route is through...
  • ... the medical centre. Head straight on and you'll come out on the corner by Head Shot.
  • However, a much prettier route is through the gardens behind this church...
  • ... which are worth a stroll in their own right.
  • However, don't get distracted. We're looking for these gates in the far corner...
  • ... which lead to the medical centre.
  • The view from the other direction, looking out into the gardens.
  • As well as leading to the medical centre, this is also the courtyard outside Head Shot...
  • ... where I'll leave you with the A-board.
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Head Shot Coffee is in the heart of Prague’s Nové Mĕsto (new town), just west of Václavské Náměstí (Wenceslas Square). Its address puts it on Palackého, one of the maze of streets to the west of the square, but this is somewhat misleading. The coffee shop is actually at the back of its own maze of indoor streets, something of a cross between mall and medical clinic, which have several entrances on Palackého.

It’s easy enough to find once you know where it is, but perhaps the best approach is through Františkánská Zahrada, the delightful, enclosed gardens behind the Church of Our Lady of the Snows, itself accessed from Jungmannova to the west or through a shopping centre/cinema to the east. Once in the gardens, you’ll find Head Shot in the southwest corner, where a gate in the wall opens onto a secluded, triangular courtyard. There are four round, four-person tables here (which catch the sun for most of the day) behind which is Head Shot, visible through a large window.

To get inside, where you need to order, use the large entrance to the right, which leads into the medical complex. A corridor runs down past the side of Head Shot, which has its entrance, a large, sliding glass door, immediately to your left as you come through the door.

Ignoring Head Shot for a second, the corridor leads to a T-junction, with another set of doors straight ahead. To the left, another corridor runs along the back of Head Shot, which has floor-to-ceiling windows all the way along. If you carry on, you’ll reach a mall or you can head deeper into the medical complex. The corridors are very tall, by the way (there’s a second storey above Head Shot), with a sloping glass roofs, which makes it very bright inside.

Returning to Head Shot, it has a modest, L-shaped interior, this arrangement mirrored by the counter, which is directly opposite you as you enter. You order here, with the menu on the wall behind the counter and cakes and sandwiches displayed in a cabinet to your left.

The seating is around the edges, starting with a two-person table to your left, while beyond the end of the counter, a three-person table occupies the window overlooking the courtyard. To the right of the door is another two-person table, beyond which is a thick red pillar and, beyond that, in the corner, a second two-person table. Finally, running along the bottom of Head Shot, are two three-person tables.

I visited a couple of times during the week, the first time having the Colombian single-origin espresso. A lovely, well-balanced, well-rounded coffee, it was served, by default, as a single shot (something of a rarity in the speciality coffee world!), although the barista pulled it as a split shot for me and another customer, who’d also ordered espresso.

On my return, I decided to try the Kenyan single-origin filter, which I had as a V60. My coffee arrived in a carafe, presented on a large wooden tray, a glass of water and yellow cup for company. It was a full-bodied brew, lacking the juiciness which I sometimes get with Kenyans. In its place was an underlying flavour which I don’t yet have a word for, but which I thoroughly enjoyed!

PALACKÉHO 720/5 • 110 00 NOVÉ MESTO • PRAGUE • CZECHIA
https://headshot-coffee-frantiskanska-zahrada.business.site +420 603 576 354
Monday 07:30 – 18:30 Roaster Respekt + Guests (espresso + filter)
Tuesday 07:30 – 18:30 Seating Tables, Tables (outside)
Wednesday 07:30 – 18:30 Food Sandwiches, Cake
Thursday 07:30 – 18:30 Service Order at Counter
Friday 07:30 – 18:30 Payment Cards + Cash
Saturday 10:00 – 18:30 Wifi Free (with code)
Sunday CLOSED Power Yes
Chain Local Visits 18th, 20th June 2019

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