29 June 2021

The Oxfordshire Caffeine Chronicles: Missing Bean, Abingdon

I've been visiting The Missing Bean in Oxford's Turl Street for over a decade and was delighted when they opened their own roastery in East Oxford a few years later. And now Missing Bean is expanding further, with two new cafés in Abingdon and Banbury, and another to come later in the summer at the West Way Square development in Botley. While I was visiting my parents at the weekend, I took the opportunity to visit the Abingdon coffee shop, which opened in late May.

Abingdon is a small market town on the River Thames, about eight miles south of Oxford. Growing up near Oxford, I went into Abingdon to have my hair cut and to take part in regattas and other sports events, for the most part. But the historic town centre and the river both offer opportunities for a pleasant stroll. Missing Bean is located on Stert Street, just across the road from the town square. The town was bustling when we arrived, while the sun was still out on Saturday afternoon, and Missing Bean itself had a steady stream of customers.

The café is based in a bright and airy space, with stools at the floor-to-ceiling windows at the shopfront, several small tables at the back, and bench seating out front. As I would soon be missing beans at home, I took the opportunity to buy some of Missing Bean's own beans, selecting a washed Nicaraguan variety with raspberry, white chocolate and pecan notes (there was also a great-sounding coffee from Myanmar, and I've been eyeing up this Colombian Gesha on their website). The bags of retail beans all feature Missing Bean's colourful design.

Beans in hand, I joined the queue and ordered a cortado and a slice of orange and pistachio cake. In a glass display on the counter, there were various other cakes, as well as breads to take home. The sleek black Kees van der Westen espresso machine is just to the right, as you face the counter, which had some lovely light blue ceramic cups stacked on top. As well as the usual espresso-based drinks, filter coffee and iced espresso drinks are also available.

My cortado was well made and had a smooth, sweet taste, which worked well with the citrus sweetness of my cake. There was a very relaxed atmosphere in the coffee shop; perfect for a lazy Saturday.

To keep me going on my walk along the Thames, I also ordered a filter coffee to go — the featured batch-brew coffee was a fruity Ethiopian coffee, which I enjoyed in my Huskee Cup. If you've forgotten your reusable cup and are getting your coffee to go, Missing Bean's cute teal take-away cups and lids are fully compostable.

Although Banbury is much further from Oxford than Abingdon, many of my closest school friends lived in North Oxfordshire and I spent many Saturdays in Banbury, mainly at Pizza Hut, the Odeon cinema and the Spiceball Leisure Centre (it was the late 1990s, OK), so I'm excited that there's a Missing Bean to visit next time I'm in town.

Missing Bean. 1 Stert Street, Abingdon, Oxfordshire, OX14 3ER. Website. Twitter. Instagram.

No comments:

Post a Comment