Our globe-trotting tour of cafes featured on Sprudge Maps continues apace with a visit to a city we love dearly: London, home to one of the world's great international cafe scenes. There's something for everyone in London, provided you love coffee (and restaurants and bars and the rest of it), which verily we do. And whilst the current COVID regulations means we cannot at present pop 'round Hero of Maida for a Sunday roast or take elevenses with Fergus or pick-up a cheeky takeaway from Roti King or drink cocktails at the recently reopened Tayer/Elementary or visit any one of the city's glorious coffee bars, we can at least dream, and do so by living vicariously through the travelogue of Sprudge Maps. Chin chin.
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Introduce yourself to our readers — tell us about your cafe!
Carbon Kopi is a Hammersmith coffee shop based in a lovely little residential area with chilled neighborhood vibes. Hatched in Auckland, New Zealand, where its founders first met and fell in love with coffee, we decided West London could do with more speciality coffee lovers and so, started Carbon Kopi to satisfy our own cravings. The name basically sums up our ethos of consistency—we really like the strong, dark characteristics associated with the chemical element, plus kopi is the Malay word for coffee, a nod to our heritage.
What equipment do you use in your shop?
Which roaster or roasters do you serve?
Square Mile is our main roaster, we have guest roasters for our filters which rotate on a monthly basis. We have featured the likes of Plot Roasting, Round Hill, Missing Bean, White Star, and Prolog is coming up next, just to name a few.
What is the neighborhood like where you're located? What's some other cool stuff nearby?
The neighborhood is a diverse mix of young families and university students, retired, young professionals, and creatives (actors!) as well as small businesses. Queen’s Club is really close to us—it’s probably the next biggest venue for tennis after Wimbledon. We are also really close to Charing Cross Hospital and are a bit of a destination for paramedics—it’s not uncommon to see an ambulance parked outside our shop, but for a different kind of emergency! We are close to many parks and pubs, and locals like to take a stroll down to the gorgeous Hammersmith riverside after grabbing a coffee.
Did you close during a mandated Coronavirus shut-down, and if so, for how long?
We closed for exactly a month, and reopened for takeaway to a warm reception in April. As mentioned we are close to the hospital, and key workers were thrilled to have us back—we also started a community-led initiative to donate coffees, which was successful.
How has the Coronavirus impacted daily work at your cafe?
As a lot of our customers are working from home, they do need to escape every now and then to work from Carbon Kopi and we provide them with the space to do it—we have implemented hand sanitizers, masks, and a sneeze screen, and the track and trace system (QR codes) is well sign-posted. From a work perspective, masks are hard to wear for long periods, and our hands do suffer from all the hand washing.
What's something cool or unique about your cafe you want folks to know?
The location actually used to be a cafe well over 50 years ago, so we feel like we’re going back to its historic roots. We also have a wonderful, private courtyard out the back that we completed in time for summer which is a bit of a hidden secret and calm oasis.
Is there a community organization or charity you'd like to shout-out as part of this feature?
Photos courtesy of Carbon Kopi, used with permission