The King's Cross speciality scene is developing slowly but surely with Caravan, Notes, Pattern and Lanark all clustered fairly close to King's Cross station. There are some great options in Islington and Clerkenwell too but there hasn't been anywhere to get good coffee in the triangle between these three areas. That's why coffee- and music-lover Justo didn't waste any time when he spotted a vacant shop on King's Cross Road, a few minutes' south-east of King's Cross station.
Frequency, whose name reflects Justo's musical interests, opened a few weeks ago but I only noticed it when I was walking past on the way home from work one evening last week. I went back the following day and am pleased to report that the café makes a great addition to the neighbourhood. The décor also echoes Frequency's musical theme: rather uniquely, the coffee bar is kitted out with sound-proofing — to great effect — and red cords that mimic sound waves hang from the ceiling. Wooden bar tables skirt around the café's perimeter and there are a few smaller tables, more suitable for working, near the door and in the back room.
The coffee is from Workshop — down the line, they hope to offer a few guest coffees too — and there were espresso (Cult of Done) and filter (Los Altares) options available. I'd been having a tough day at work and double coffee seemed to be the answer, so I ordered both a piccolo (£2.80) and a filter coffee, brewed through the Aeropress (£2.80) — they will also brew you a V60 if you would like.
My piccolo was on the long side — it was probably closer to a flat white in volume, and the price reflected that — but it was well prepared and the latte art heart endured right to the bottom. Despite the greater quantity of milk than I usually prefer, the coffee was smooth and flavoursome. The filter coffee was the real star, though: the subtle sweet and fruity and notes came through very nicely indeed. Plus, the milk came served in two tiny little vials — I drink my coffee black but the presentation was adorable.
Frequency also sells a few sandwiches, cakes and sweet treats — the chocolate chip cookie looked particularly delicious, although £2.70 felt like slightly too high a price point. There is a bigger room in the basement, which isn't open yet — the plan is to host live music and other musical events down there but, understandably, Justo and his team are focusing on the coffee for now. And why not when they're doing such a great job?
Frequency Coffee. 121 King's Cross Road, London, WC1X 9NH (Tube: King's Cross). Website. Twitter. Instagram.