I’m very particular about coffee. I don’t drink instant coffee because it tastes terrible. I’ll drink Starbucks coffee when I don’t have a choice as the coffee is OK (in my experience about 1 in 3 cups I buy from Starbucks has had the coffee burnt by the barista). If I’m out for a meal at a pub or restaurant (even expensive ones) I’ll always turn down the offer of coffee after dessert as I know it’ll always be average at best. I have my own espresso machine, only buy quality coffee that’s ground in front of my eyes and keep the coffee in a plastic container in the fridge to maintain optimal freshness. As I say, I’m very particular about coffee.
I’ve gone to many a cafe over the years and my absolute favourite has to be Bean Loved in Skipton. It’s a family run cafe that is exactly how I imagine Starbucks was when it started (before it became hugely successful, global and consistently mediocre worldwide).
For me a good cafe requires either good food or good coffee. Bean Loved has both. They have a selection of paninis which (unlike Starbucks paninis) are varied in terms of ingredients and always delicious (the minted lamb one is my current favourite). I should probably write a separate article some time about my obsession with muffins and my pursuit of the perfect muffin, but let’s just say the the blueberry cheescake muffin Bean Loved sell is right up there (it combines the classic blueberry muffin format with cheesecake mix in liquid state – delicious)! And the coffee is excellent, and looks as good as it tastes:
What I particularly like is the attention to detail. If you order a take-away coffee they do this pretty swirly pattern on the top – even though it has a lid on it! I’ve never had a burnt cup yet and I can see as the coffee’s being prepared that every bit of care and attention is taken (since I have my own machine I know how to get the best out of it and they certainly do).
The cafe itself has ample seating, some sofas, some wooden chairs, nothing uniform – which I like. The staff are very friendly and helpful and I can feel the real enthusiasm that comes from people who actually care about what they do (something you don’t get in certain global corporations I could mention).
So if your find yourself in Skipton and fancy a coffee then take a wander along Otley street, just off the high street (next to the pedestrian crossing) and go visit Bean Loved:
You won’t be disappointed! Oh and before you ask: no, I am in no way affiliated with Bean Loved other than being a happy customer. 🙂