Jimmy Bean

Jimmy Bean

Jimmy Bean

cappuccino and Allpress coffee beans

cappuccino and Allpress coffee beans

On an afternoon in Winchester I spot Jimmy Bean on the food market selling coffee from a battered old Citroen van, very much like HoBo Co. I see they sell coffee as well as serve coffee. I am invited to try the coffee and we have a long chat about coffee.

Jimmy Bean started work in a Italian chain, now long gone. He made the coffee and thought he did a pretty good job, until he was in London one day and had coffee in an indie coffee shop, and his mind was blown away.

This started him on a quest on how to roast and serve quality coffee. He visited Latin America, he was on the coffee farms, he saw the coffee being grown, picked, roasted, served, he went to Australia, he read the books, he learnt all there was to learn about coffee, but is still learning. He then set up this little business.

His philosophy is, and I entirely agree, as an indie coffee shop, in this case a van, you do not serve what masquerades as coffee in the chains, you serve quality, as that is the only way to compete, as they cannot compete on quality. They may wear the t-shirt that says barista but that does not make you a barista.

He had for sale coffee beans, only roasted Monday. I bought a pack, and he offered to make me a coffee to see what the coffee was like.

The coffee was Allpress, roasted in Shoreditch in London.

I asked for a cappuccino, as I would then have a point of reference. It was good. It was better than Harris + Hoole Guildford (and that is not to belittle them as they have excellent coffee and have excellent baristas), possibly on a par with Stokes of High Bridge in Lincoln.

The coffee is served in biodegradable paper cups.

Looking at the Hobo Co battered old Citroen van, I think maybe looks old, but not actually old. That of Jimmy Bean is a lovingly restored 1954 Citroen HZ Van, then custom kitted out to serve coffee and food.

Beside the van was seating and tables, the seating covered in coffee Hessian sacks.

My mind was set on lunch at Ginger Two, which by the time I eventually got there, the kitchen was closed, but next visit, if a pleasant afternoon, I think this is where I will sit and have lunch.

It begs the question: Why does anyone visit the tax-dodging chains further up the High Street for overpriced disgusting coffee when they can obtain a quality coffee off Jimmy Bean?

Jimmy Bean is in Winchester High Street Wednesday to Saturday. Stop by and try a coffee, you will not be disappointed.

Jimmy Bean is an absolute must for the Guildford farmers market, first Tuesday of the month in Guildford High Street.

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One Response to “Jimmy Bean”

  1. keithpp Says:

    Jimmy Bean is sadly no more. Now Savage & Bean.

    Jimmy Bean still does his excellent coffee but no longer his excellent food. Savage does the food in a wood fired oven, and it is not the standard of Jimmy Bean.

    A very retrograde step.


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