Best Cafes and Coffee Shops in King’s Cross
Don’t let the exuberant (and rather good) food menu lull you into thinking this King’s Cross cafe is more about eating, the coffee at Caravan is the real deal.
It’s fair-trade and sustainably sourced of course and roasted to bring out the best flavours by their team of coffee geeks / magicians. All Caravan coffee is roasted on their eco-friendly Loring Smart Roaster down the road at their roastery HQ in Islington.Still, the food is excellent – there’s a reason that Caravan has become one of the area’s favourite breakfast spots – no doubt thanks to dishes like chorizo and potato hash with spinach, poached eggs, tomato fresca drenched in saffron-buttermilk dressing.
Notes is a familiar face in London – there are branches dotted over quite a few parts of the city. Don’t let that put you off though – they’ve got the coffee shop meets wine bar with a dash of live jazz thrown in for good measure formula down to a T.
The single origin coffee is roasted in east London before being zipped to this coffee shop near King’s Cross station for a delicious cuppa, the charcuterie is top notch and the live jazz on Wednesday evenings rounds it all off a treat.
Le Cafe Alain Ducasse
No doubt the opening of Alain Ducasse’s Le Cafe near King’s Cross could have gone more smoothly – to put it bluntly there was no shortage of uproar at the ambitiously-priced menu – in particular, one specific £15 coffee.
In fairness to the Parisian Michelin-starred mega chef, the coffee here is exquisitely good and the £15 one has a story behind it that may just about justify the price.
Single-origin and unique blends are roasted at the Ducasse HQ in Paris before being whisked to their Coal Drops Yard cafe ready for you to enjoy.
Even better, if you like what you drink, you can buy the coffees by the bean or specially ground for you to brew at home.
Part coffee shop, part social enterprise – Redemption Roasters’ coffees come with a side of good feels. The coffee is prepped in Aylesbury prison, before being transformed into well-made coffee in this pleasant spot in Coal Drops Yard.
They also train up young offenders as roasters and baristas and employ them in the cafe where ethical coffee meets socially impactful business practice.
Origin Coffee Roasters
Origin has two locations in the British Library – a small coffee bar and the main cafe in the central atrium of the library. Their impeccably-made coffees are always on point – no small feat given the number of people that order in any given hour.
The Cornwall-based roastery was founded in 2004 – pre-historic times in the British coffee scene, and they’ve been working on their craft ever since. Origin’s direct trade relationships with producers means they can offer full traceability on their coffees and that producers are paid fair amounts for their beans.
Aux Pains de Papy
Aux Pains de Papy is the next best thing to hopping on the Eurostar and indulging in a cheeky Parisian breakfast. To be honest, it may even be better – the deliciously flaky croissants at this traditional patisserie are so good they’re often named as the best you can find in London.
Don’t even get us started on when you catch them warm and fresh out of the oven, exuding crisp buttery goodness into your morning like a ray of honeyed sunshine. Wash down with a coffee in true Parisian style.
Craft Coffee’s small stall behind the station is decidedly on the “no frills” side of things. Who needs frills anyway when you’re serving up coffee this good?
Their coffees are brewed with beans from Notes – brewed to perfection and the perfect pick me up for those in a dash.
The hygge interior at Half Cup couldn’t be more on trend if it tried – hanging lights, aquamarine leather banquettes – We’ll bet many people have been tempted through its doors based on looks alone.
The coffee is even better – sourced from Nude, the ever-changing rotation of guest coffees means there’s always something new to try, though the house blend is reliably good too.
You might have spotted Frequency up in Angel before. They also have a spot in King’s Cross. The cafe is your typical hipster spot: minimal decoration and even more minimal design but some very very good coffee.
They don’t charge you for extras like oat milk or decaf and do offer a decent range of cakes to get stuck into. You’ll find bagels and sandwiches on offer too but the prices are a little steep for what you get.
That coffee though…
Giraffe is actually a pretty big brand. They have locations across the UK, and even in a couple of foreign airports too. As such the environs are a little bit cookie cutter but that doesn’t change the fact that they do a good cup of coffee and some nice food too.
That food gathers pretty much anything considered tasty, from katsu curries to burgers and plates of pulled-pork tacos, and puts it on an eclectic menu which gives choices for small bites and big feeds.
The coffee does about the same thing as the food does: not letting you down. It’s not going to blow your mind either, but if you’re looking for a relaxed, safe option, you’ll find it here.
Wildcard is a newcomer to the Coal Drops Yard network of great food and bars. They’ve taken over a segment of the Granary Building up there and turned it into a very sleek cafe.
The coffee is very good, and the product of single origin beans sourced from Quarter Horse Coffee – a brand that champions sustainability in the coffee industry.
Alongside that coffee you’ll want to try out some of their baked goods. They have a knack for getting the pastries to the utmost level of flakiness. We probably don’t need to say much more than that.
Moreish Cafe Deli
For one of the best cafes in the area you actually have to stroll about 5 minutes out of King’s Cross and into neighbouring Bloomsbury. It’s close enough to the action of King’s Cross and a cool enough cafe that we think it should make the guide.
Moreish’s coolness is largely derived from its owner, a lovely woman who runs the place all by herself turning out decent coffee, nice cakes and simple sandwiches. She also runs the place as a plant shop, selling all of the many bits of greenery that give the place its atmosphere.
Grab your drinks and (weather permitting) one of the outdoor tables for a relaxed spot of people watching on the quiet streets outside.
Kings Cross Cafe Guide: Practical Tips
- You’ll be able to walk between many of these places so if you can’t find a seat in one of these cafes, know that there’s probably one waiting for you very close by.
- If you don’t want to be in the middle of the hustle and bustle, pick a cafe that’s away from the train station like Moreish, Frequency or Caravan.