Caffeine in the City: These are the Square Mile’s best independent coffee shops


There's plenty more where this came from. (Source: Getty)

The City of London is full of places to get your morning caffeine kick - but you don’t have to settle for subpar coffee from (shudder) a chain.

To celebrate International Coffee Day on Sunday, we’ve put together a list of the best independent coffee shops in the Square Mile.

The Black Sheep

Unit 1, The Leadenhall Building, 122 Leadenhall St, London EC3V 4PT

Black Sheep was created because its founders wanted to rid the world of boring, average-tasting coffee by only sourcing unorthodox coffees which have a story to be told. You can find this local favourite, complete with industrial decor, underneath the Cheesegrater. Staff are friendly and the service is fast - and its loyalty cards require only six drinks to get a freebie.

Curator’s Coffee

9A Cullum St, London EC3M 7JJ

Just around the corner from City A.M. Towers (lucky us), Curator’s serves up specialty coffee, tea and freshly prepared food, with a new recipe created every month to "excite, challenge and please". The coffee house was created by a small group of antipodeans who source from local and international roasters and are devoted to great tasting coffee.There’s only enough seats for six people, though, so don’t all rush there at once.

Secret Frog Coffee Co.

28-30 Houndsditch, London EC3A 7DB

First off, it has free wifi, a basic necessity. Also, Secret Frog uses Monmouth beans (we’ll get to that later) to make its espresso, and its loyalty cards get you a free drink after only five purchases. If you’re still not sold, there’s plenty of space to relax as this shop is set up over two floors - but keep an eye out for the Secret Frog - you never know where he might pop up.

Coco di Mama

21 Lime Street, London EC3M 7HB

Founded by lifelong friends Daniel and Jeremy, this pasta and coffee serving joint was designed to power working lives - which is good because it's open on weekdays days only. Customers say the queue moves quickly and the place has nice vibe should you want to dine in - and it has just opened a new branch in Leadenhall Market.

The New Black

10 Philpot Ln, London EC3M 8AA

Time Out has called this an “imposing place for serious caffeine junkies” - so make sure you can tell your Long Black from your Ristretto. This lab-style shop gives off a cool clinical feel and has till-side Ipads where you can learn more about roasters and beans. Prices are slightly steeper than usual according to reviews, but money isn’t an issue when you're after great coffee.

Taylor St Baristas

6AA, 2 Cheapside, London EC2V 6AU

Located just outside St Paul’s Station, this London stalwart offers a library of ever changing coffees from around the world. This cosy site is well known for its artisan roasts, finely crafted coffee and has some pretty cool coffee kits too. You can even order coffee tailored to your personal preference, delivered to your door.

This one is located just over the bridge, but it’s so good we couldn’t leave it out.


2 Park St, London SE1 9AB

Monmouth has been around for over 35 years and still hasn’t lost its touch. Located in the prime location of Borough Market, customers are able to sample beans from Africa, the Americas and Asia which are roasted in nearby Bermondsey. Along with your morning fix, you can also buy as whole or ground beans to take home. It’s been described as one of the “most revered names in British coffee and a pioneer in the recent renaissance of cafe culture” by the market.