Welcome to the penultimate Coffee Spot Awards Shortlist for 2021, the Brian’s Coffee Spot Special Award, which was won last year by Kaffeine. This is a special award for those Coffee Spots which don’t quite fit into the other categories, but which nonetheless I absolutely love… It’s also a chance for me to recognise and reward those wonderful Coffee Spots that I come across during the year and which mean something special to me.
You can see the shortlist after the gallery.
There are eight Coffee Spots on the shortlist this year, all listed in order of publication.
Let’s get this shortlist started with The Hideout, bringing Union Hand-roasted coffee to the University of Surrey campus. Beau and Charlie have done amazing things at The Hideout, including staying open all this year despite various COVID-19 restrictions. Throughout it all, they’ve continued to expand The Hideout and build a strong, sustainable business.
Open Grounds Café was one of several new openings in Guildford this year. What’s more, it’s a volunteer-run social enterprise, part of the Baptist Church on Millmead. It’s a lovely cafe in its own right, serving Ethicaladdictions on espresso, although my favourite part is the large terrace at the front, which gained Open Grounds a spot on the Best Outdoor Seating shortlist. Open Grounds is also on the Most Popular Coffee Spot shortlist.
Staying in Guildford, the Hideaway is another new opening and another social enterprise. Tucked away inside the walled gardens of Guildford’s Allen House Grounds,The Hideaway uses NewGround‘s Big House blend on espresso. It too has a lovely terrace, this one running along the front of the cafe, which sees The Hideaway also shortlisted for the Best Outdoor Seating Award. The Hideaway is also shortlisted for the Most Popular Coffee Spot Award.
From Guildford to Wandsworth and Another Brother, another new addition this year. Despite this, it has made a big impact, with friendly, welcoming staff, serving great coffee and brunch from its sunny corner spot. Another has also been shortlisted for the Best Breakfast and Best Neighbourhood Coffee Spot Awards.
Moving on the Llandudno and the Heartland Coffee Bar, tucked away inside Heartland Coffee Roasters. Designed to showcase and promote Heartland’s range of coffee, you can sit at the counter at the back, chatting with the barista about all things coffee, or pop upstairs to the mezzanine area overlooking the roastery. Heartland Coffee Bar also been shortlisted for the Best Physical Space and Best Coffee Spot near a Railway Station Awards.
Another coffee shop in a roastery, Oxford’s NewGround Coffee is also another social enterprise, this time working to create jobs and training opportunities for ex-offenders. The coffee shop itself is lovely, minimalist space, while the coffee is excellent, which has seen NewGround also shortlisted for this year’s Best Roaster/Retailer Award.
From Oxford to Crewe and yet another new opening. Mini Beans Coffee began a mobile horse(coffee)box, but the COVID-19 pandemic led to a change of tack. In May, Mini Beans became one of the founding tenants in Crewe’s Market Hall, a wonderfully refurbished Victorian market hall. Mini Beans has also been shortlisted for the Most Unlikely Place to Find a Coffee Spot Award.
The final entry in this year’s shortlist takes us to Portland, Maine, and Little Woodfords. Moving premises, particularly to one half the size of the original, was never going to be easy. Doing it in the middle of a pandemic just added to the difficulty, but despite all these setbacks, Little Woodfords has thrived in its new location. Little Woodfords has also been shortlisted for the Smallest Coffee Spot and Best Neighbourhood Coffee Spot Awards.
Don’t forget to check out the other 19 Coffee Spot Awards for 2021.
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