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Taylor Street Baristas

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by Ellie Ross (subscribe)
Freelance travel writer and Policy Adviser for the UK government living in Brixton. View my blog for ethical and budget travel inspiration
Published March 31st 2013
Poached eggs and coffee @TSB
"This tea is really something. I love it." says Nigel Slater on the second page of the menu. Does he? Well, he should do. The tea menu is extensive and deserves perusing, while even the breakfast tea was eminently drinkable. A far cry from PG Tips or Yorkshire (they have their place, but it's lovely to sip a different tea. It lends breakfast out a sense of occasion), Taylor St Baristas (TSB) is known for its wide variety of caffeinated beverages.

There are three TSBs in central London, none, surprisingly on Taylor Street. Apparently this is named after a place in Sydney where the three founders of Taylor Street 'had a great time'. I was going to say how much I liked their breakfasts, and also that I quite liked their coffee, but then I read their website which just seems to be page after page of sneering remarks about London. I quote: "Taylor Street was founded as a much needed response to the dire state of London coffee in 2006". "It was founded during a bleak London winter." If these people hate London so much, why on earth are they here?

However, the coffee was pleasant, I concede that. I also really enjoy the fact that there is a constant rotation of the type of beans they use, so it's possible to enjoy a variety of different styles and regions of coffee at the same coffee shop.

The breakfast menu was extensive and mostly well thought out too, but I have slight issue with the sweet chilli sauce on poached eggs and aubergine hummus. It might sound great in writing, but the dish was over sweet. There was also an unidentifiable green paté on the other piece of toast which was a little strange. I didn't feel wholly comfortable eating it-mixed with the runny orange yolk it was deeply unpalatable.

Otherwise, TSB has plenty of wifi friendly plug sockets and great customer service. Worth a visit for laptop friendly tables, great tea selection, good coffee and for those who have no taste-buds when it comes to breakfast dishes!
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Why? For an excellent tea selection and strange breakfasts
When: Daytime
Phone: 44 207 929 220
Where: Central London and Brighton
Cost: £2.50 for a coffee
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