The Coffee Traveller (COVID-19)

A classic espresso in a classic black cup, served at The Coffee Traveller in Chiswick.Having started my coffee tour of Chiswick at Chief Coffee, I then inadvertently spent the rest of it in Hammersmith, so I thought it best that my final stop should be The Coffee Traveller, a lovely spot by the Thames and very much in Chiswick. Located on Thames Road, a quiet street in a residential area, it’s in a row of eight terrace houses with shops on the ground floor and has a lovely, quirky interior which, come Monday, you’ll be able to sit in again. Until then, you have to sit outside, where you’ll find a pair of old school desks on the pavement, under the shade of an awning. Best of all, however, is the secret garden at the back, a wonderfully relaxing spot, the perfect place to end a long day spent visiting coffee shops.

The coffee is from old friends, Caravan, the Daily Blend served from a standard espresso menu, along with tea, hot chocolate and smoothies, plus craft beer and wine by the glass or bottle. Meanwhile, if you’re hungry, the kitchen at the back offers the like of pancakes and omelettes to go with filled croissants, bagels, rolls and sandwiches, plus lots of cake.

You can read more of my thoughts after the gallery.

  • The Coffee Traveller, on the north side of Thames Road in Chiswick.
  • You can sit outside at one of these old school desks under the awning...
  • ... where you'll find plenty of signs...
  • ... although this one, written on the window, caught my eye.
  • Let's go in, shall we?
  • This room at the front had, in pre-pandemic times, more seating.
  • For now, there's just this table made of an old door in the window.
  • The menus are on the wall to your left...
  • ... with the selection of wines on a table below.
  • Opposite this, by the door, are chiller cabinets with more drinks and ice cream.
  • The counter, meanwhile is at the back.
  • You order and pay over here, while if I hadn't arrived at the end of the day...
  • ... there would have been cakes over here. But wait, what's that on the wall?
  • I need no further invitation!
  • A long, narrow passageway leads along the right-hand wall, past the counter...
  • ... to this cosy seating area at the back. This is the view looking to the left...
  • ... while this is the back wall, with a door to the kitchen. The seating's out of use for now...
  • ... but should be available again on Monday. This is the view from the left-hand end...
  • ... where, if you turn around, you'll see another sign!
  • To the left is another seating area and, beyond that, the back of the counter.
  • However, you need to turn to right and head out through this door...
  • ... which leads to this porch (view from the outside). Turning around again, there it is...
  • ... The Coffee Traveller's secret garden.
  • There are a pair of L-shaped sofa-benches (made of old pallets) on the right...
  • ... while at the back on the left is this three-person table.
  • The sofa-benches in more detail. There are plenty of cushions, covered in old coffee sacks.
  • The view from the other direction.
  • Neat artwork.
  • If you are worried about the rain, by the way, there's a large, retractable umbrella.
  • Okay, time to go back inside.
  • I loved the quiry interior, with artwork like this (on the back wall of the back room).
  • Don't just walk down the passageways, by the way. You also need to look up...
  • ... where you'll find things like this bathtub lampshade!
  • Obligatory light bulb shot.
  • Is this a be'spoke' light fitting?
  • I had an espresso, by the way, served in a proper cup...
  • ... which came with (despite what the bottle says) some water.
  • I'll leave you with a classic view of my classic espresso.
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The Coffee Traveller is on the north side of Thames Road, which, as the name suggests, runs parallel to the river, the banks of which are about 20 metres away to the south. From the street, it’s not immediately obvious what delights lie inside The Coffee Traveller, since all you can really see is the door on the right and two large windows on the left, in front of which are a pair of old school desks, complete with six chairs. Although the street is quiet, I do feel you’d be missing out if you sat out here, particularly once you’ve read the words “Welcome: our covered garden open”, written in bright lettering on the window above the desks.

Stepping inside, you find yourself in an open space with the counter at the back. A single table, made of an old door, stands in the windows, with another table against the left-hand wall under the menu, but what seating there was has been stripped out for now. Perhaps more importantly, a long, narrow passageway leads past the counter along the right-hand wall with the words “Pssst… over here. Walk down to our garden” written on a mirror hanging on the wall. I needed no further invitation.

The passageway leads to cosy little seating area at the back. You enter on the right-hand side, while in the middle of the back wall, a door leads to the kitchen. Off to the left is an even smaller seating area and, if you turn left here, you’ll end up at the back of the counter. Instead, follow the sign which points to the right, leading you through the back door of the house and through a porch (which feels like another narrow passageway) into the delightful, sheltered garden.

Long and thin, it’s gorgeous back here, like a larger version of the courtyard garden at SLOW Café in Prague. Tall fences, made of painted corrugated iron, an old door and a pair of mirrors, add to its secluded air. Despite the corrugated iron and stone-flagged floor, it’s a surprisingly green space with multiple potted plants and flowers, while beyond the back wall is a long line of trees. Meanwhile, a large, retractable umbrella can provide shade/cover from the rain (delete as appropriate).

A pair of L-shaped sofa-benches made of old pallets are arranged top-to-tail in a C-shape on the right. The front one has a low oblong coffee table, a stool and a folding chair, while the one at the back has a smaller, round coffee table and its own folding chair. If the prospect of sitting on an old pallet doesn’t sound appealing, both have cushions covered with coffee sacks. To the left, the wall runs about 30° from straight, so the garden slowly widens as it goes back, creating a little nook that holds a small, square, three-person table, where I sat.

You order at the counter, but then take a seat and your coffee will be brought to you. I kept it simple with an espresso, which was served in a proper cup, along with a small biscuit, a bottle of water and glass. Having had Caravan’s Daily Blend on many occasions, it held no surprises, rewarding me with a fine, well-balanced shot, the perfect end to a perfect day.

58 THAMES ROAD • CHISWICK • LONDON • W4 3RE
www.thecoffeetraveller.com +44 (0) 208 747 4996
Monday CLOSED Roaster Caravan (espresso only)
Tuesday 08:30 – 17:00 Seating Benches, Tables (outside)
Wednesday 08:30 – 17:00 Food Breakfast, Lunch, Cake
Thursday 08:30 – 17:00 Service Order at Counter
Friday 08:30 – 17:00 Payment Card Only
Saturday 08:30 – 17:30 Wifi No
Sunday 09:00 – 17:00 Power Limited
Chain No Visits 11th May 2021

Liked this? Then don’t forget to check out the Coffee Spot Guide to London for more great Coffee Spots.


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