14 November 2018

The Caffeine Chronicles: Redemption Roasters, King's Cross

Redemption Roasters' first London coffee shop, located on Lamb's Conduit Street, is close enough to my King's Cross office that I can pop down for a pourover or to buy some beans in my lunch break. But I am even more excited when I hear that they will be opening a third cafe (the second being in Farringdon) in the shiny new Coal Drops Yard development at King's Cross.

Coal Drops Yard has been a work in progress for several years, as I've observed from the towpath on my lunchtime jogs, and finally opened up earlier this month. If you are into high-end lifestyle boutiques, you'll probably enjoy shopping at Coal Drops Yard, but I am more interested in the food and drink options, which include Casa & Plaza Pastór (a new eatery from one of my favourite Mexican restaurants) and Redemption Roasters.

The coffee shop occupies a small unit on Lower Stable Street, on the ground floor at the edge of the 'yard' below Granary Square. Although the new development has its fair share of modern glass and sleek metal, Lower Stable Street preserves a lot of the area's industrial heritage, housing shops and eateries inside the brick viaducts. There are a couple of tables outside Redemption Roasters, although given the recent weather, they may not get much use for the next few months.

Inside, the space features even more period details, but with some Redemption Roasters twists to the décor, like the mid-century school-style chairs. There are a few small tables, a larger communal table and then a few spots to perch — at the brew bar and at the window. There are also beans for sale — Redemption Roasters roasts their coffee in Aylesbury prison, where they train young offenders with roasting and barista skills — and a small but well-curated collection of coffee-making kit.

I've been to the newest Redemption Roasters location three times now, twice for a piccolo and once for a pourover. The coffee is prepared to the same high standards I've come to expect from this company. One of the piccolos, brewed with a particularly fruity Peruvian espresso, is particularly good and had faultless latte art. I was also pleased to see Acme cups and saucers in the dark blue colour, which also seemed to be popular in New York during my recent trip.

On another occasion, I have more time and order an Ethiopian Yirgacheffe brewed through the pourover. At £4.90, it's on the pricey side, but the coffee is very well brewed with the sweet and citrusy flavour notes coming through nicely. I also order scrambled eggs on a delicious sourdough. There are also assorted pastries, sandwiches, toasties and brunch dishes on offer. King's Cross is far from the speciality coffee black spot it once was, but I am really glad that Redemption Roasters have arrived in the neighbourhood.

Redemption Roasters. Stable Street, King's Cross, London, N1C 4AQ (Tube: King's Cross). Website. Twitter. Instagram.

For 100+ more of my favourite coffee shops in London, please check out my speciality coffee guide.

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