The first shortlist for the 2022 Coffee Spot Awards is the “Most Unlikely Place to Find a Coffee Spot” Award, won in 2021 by Garden Social Coffee House. While there are good Coffee Spots everywhere, some of them are in unexpected places, either geographically or in terms of their setting.
This Award celebrates these unlikely Coffee Spots and is defined by those on the shortlist. Some are in towns and cities where I wasn’t expecting to find a great Coffee Spot, while others are recognised for their unusual settings.
You can see the shortlist after the gallery.
There are eight Coffee Spots on the shortlist this year, all listed in order of publication.
Fika⁺, perched on the top of Chester’s city walls, falls into the category of an unusual setting. In contrast to the walls, now almost 2,000 years old, Fika⁺ is very modern, a vegan coffee shop, serving Heartland Coffee Roasters and food from its own micro bakery. Fika⁺ has also been shortlisted for Coffee Spot with the Best Lighting Award.
Moving across the border into North Wales, Betty Berkins is a coffee shop in an old farm building, overlooking the River Dee. What makes Betty Berkins stand out is both the quality of the cakes and food (all baked on-site) and the quality of the coffee, from old friends, Allpress. Betty Berkins has also been shortlisted for the Best Outdoor Seating and Best Cake Awards.
Crossing the Dee Estuary, we come to an industrial estate in Birkenhead, home to Bloom Building and Coffee. Combining café, bar and venue space, while also hosting the Open Door Charity (which the coffee shop part funds), Bloom Building and Coffee serves coffee from nearby Adams + Russell. Bloom Building and Coffee is also shortlisted for the Best Basement/Mezzanine and Best Physical Space Awards.
Our next entry takes us to to Marietta in Georgia, where I made the chance discovery of Tuesday Coffee + Shoppe, a lovely little coffee and gift shop, which very much made my day when I found it. Serving local roasters, Bellwood Coffee, Tuesday Coffee + Shoppe also sells an interesting range of bespoke products, many from local artisan producers. Tuesday Coffee + Shoppe is also on the shortlist for this year’s Smallest Coffee Spot Award.
Back on this side of the Atlantic, our next entry is from Berlin. Although there’s good coffee all across the city, it’s still quite rare in tourist areas, which makes The Barn’s coffee shop in the Sony Center, around the corner from Potsdamer Platz, such a good find. Although very different in its setting from The Barn’s other Berlin coffee shop, there’s the same warm welcome and the usual range of coffee, common to all The Barn’s Berlin locations.
Staying in Berlin, Five Elephant is another of the city’s speciality coffee pioneers, this time in the unusual setting of the food hall of the KaDeWe department store on Tauentzienstraße. While department store coffee shops aren’t unusual in themselves, it’s rare to find one of this quality, with a range of single-origins on espresso and filter. Five Elephant is also on the shortlist for this year’s Best Flat White Award.
We’re back in America for our last two entries, both from this October’s road trip. The first is from the start of the road trip, a chance find in Chattanooga, where we stopped at Niedlov’s Cafe & Bakery. A family-owned and operated artisan bakery, Niedlov’s has recently upped its coffee game, using Onyx Coffee Lab on espresso and filter. Niedlov’s has also been shortlisted for the Best Outdoor Seating and Best Cake Awards.
Our final entry on this year’s shortlist is Hardline Coffee in Sioux City, the last stop on my road trip to Madison, South Dakota. Another chance find, Hardline Coffee is inside Art SUX Gallery, acting as the in-house coffee shop, while the gallery offering extensive seating options. Hardline roasts its own single-origin Brazilian espresso, while North Carolina’s Black & White Coffee Roasters provides various filter options
The winner will be announced on Monday, 2nd January. In the meantime, don’t forget to check out the other 19 Coffee Spot Awards for 2022.
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