Hackney Coffee Company
Another cool haunt on Hackney Road, Hackney Coffee Co is - unsurprisingly - as innovative and quirky as they come. This little spot is perfect for pre-Sunday Columbia Road flower market madness or for a quick coffee fix in the morning before all those manic cross-London commutes we like to put ourselves through. The biggest win here? That would be the crazy-good coffee, of course.
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Drinks in jam jars, payments taken in BitCoin, crazily creative cakes - this outrageously on-trend cafe is well worth the minute stroll from Stratford. This haunt is home to some bare good vibes, and its home-baked tarts, quiches, breads and freshly ground coffee will undoubtedly make Sawmill a regular lunchtime hangout for all you East London heads.
Exmouth Coffee Company
This chic independent coffee shop a short hop from both Brick Lane and Whitechapel Gallery is a must for hungry folk lurking in the area. Boasting perfect pastries, creamy cakes, quaint quiches, sultry salads and an in-house coffee roasting unit, this little haunt has everything you could possibly wish for when you're stomach is growling and your eyelids are starting to weigh a ton.
All You Read is Love
*Closed 24/04/18* On a happy jaunt around Leytonstone we came across this little nugget of joy and fell in love instantly. This bookshop-cum-cafe-cum-cocktail bar was set up by siblings who noticed a lack of anything similar in the surrounds. The decor is the kind of eclectic that assaults your eyes and leaves you wondering where to look next. The walls are lined with miscellaneous posters, illustrations by local artists, paintings, plants, and murals featuring weird but characterful creatures. It was so overwhelming we had to ignore the shelves of books and boxes of records crying out for a rummage and order a cocktail. Each one was inspired by a different fictional character, so we sipped away on a Rodion Raskolnikov made with rum, sugar, lime and raspberries. It was zesty and sweet, perfect for a cosy up on the sofa with boo, or swaying along to indie music at one of their regular live gigs.
When we found out there’s a café in Hackney Wick making homemade jam from organic fruit collected from their family farm in Greece, we kind of lost our sh*t. Named after Gaia, the ancient Greek goddess of Earth, and inspired by traditional Greek recipes passed down through generations, this spot is all about serving organic superfoods in a super-mythological atmosphere. Think butter beans in lentils, fish fillets, granola, sourdough toasties or spinach and feta pie. Yum.