Posts Tagged ‘Afternoon in Nottingham’

Afternoon in Nottingham

September 12, 2019

A cheese sandwich stall not seen by at the side of Nottingham Station. High quality cheese.

A wander around Hopkins vintage emporium.

Lunch at Cartwheel Coffee and a cappuccino.

To The Specialty Coffee Shop, caught Michelangelo as he was leaving. I was invited to stay for coffee cupping later, but not possible.

I had Coffee Gems Kenyan coffee. We tried, it was excellent. I left beans for the coffee cupping.

Guest coffee Koppi, but no time to try.

Looked in the cheesemonger in Flying Horse Walk.

Too late for train decided to catch next train.

Time to kill, looked in BeerHeadZ. Time for a craft beer.

A wander down to Nottingham Canal.

Train was packed, standing room only, but not pakked in like sardines as I feared.

Afternoon in Nottingham

March 9, 2019

Gale blowing this morning, nearly blown off my feet, but luckily not raining and bus and train running on time.

1140 two-coach East Midlands Trains overcrowded train Lincoln to Nottingham, but the rail companies do not care. Do not even have the courtesy to respond to tweets.

Talking to three guys from Holland over for a weekend of football, they commented how all the towns were the same, the same crap corporate chains. That in Holland they had learnt, quality indie businesses in town centres, the crap sold in chains can buy on-line.

A lesson the idiots in Town Halls in bed with greedy developers and corporate chains have yet to learn.

In contrast to 200 Degrees Lincoln newly opened this week amidst overblown hype, 200 Degrees Nottingham Station almost empty, though did start to fill up whilst I was there, but this was lunchtime.

Contrary to what 200 Degrees claim, the clientele not commuters, though this may be true in the morning and evening. What I always see is people with friends, meeting friends or people on their own.

Food good, coffee mediocre. Not acceptable old coffee on sale. I would expect better when 200 Degrees roast their own coffee. Not somewhere I would recommend for coffee when far better places for coffee in Nottingham.

One of which is Cartwheel Coffee where I headed for a coffee.

Unlike most towns on a Saturday, Nottingham never seems busy, though walking to the centre through a dismal shopping centre, never seen so packed, not the shopping centre itself which is always deserted but people using as a short cut.

It is strange how Nottingham Station is isolated from the city centre and have to walk through a dingy dismal deserted shopping centre and then along a street lined with crap corporate chains find anywhere.

Cartwheel Coffee packed. Outside a guy on saxophone.

I luckily found a seat by the window. More people than were in Cartwheel, looked in, saw full and walked away.

I ordered a cappuccino. A couple walked in, luckily found a seat. As they walked in, asked me what the coffee was like? I said excellent. I mentioned other places worth visiting, then later as I left wrote them a list – The Specialty Coffee Shop, Wired and Outpost Coffee. I also suggested check out Cobden Chambers opposite Wired, especially Ideas on Paper where I was headed next.

I asked where they were from? Sheffield. I suggested try Tamper Sellers Wheel of which I have heard good things, though not personally visited. Featured in Coffee Shop North.

I mentioned an article in The Guardian on the decline of Sheffield and the ludicrous response from the local council, the same council responsible for destruction of street trees, we have chains.

Once again an example of Town Halls lacking any understanding why people visit. Why visit Sheffield from Nottingham or Lincoln, or vice a versa to find the same crap chains?

Two weekends previous, two Chinese girls, visitors to Lincoln, complimented Madame Waffle on the quality of their tea and asked could they buy loose leaf tea. Two other visitors complimented on the coffee and how much they liked it was an independent coffee shop.

And what does Visit Lincoln promote and hype, 200 Degrees, a chain serving at best mediocre coffee.

Interesting conversation with a group of Muslims, ironically with a stall outside St Peter’s Church. They said it was rare to talk with a non-Muslim who knew anything about Islam and The Koran.

Why outside St Peter’s Church and in the Market Square ice cream vans with engines running in pedestrianised streets?

Chocolatier in Cobden Chambers, knows nothing about chocolate. Chocolate bar clones of Hotel Chocolat, wrapped in plastic, soy emulsifier.

Today, first time, I found the Zero Waste Shop in Cobden Chambers open. But no time other than for a cursory glance. What though I did see, not acceptable to pay 5p for a paper bag or have to weigh in 20g increments.

Nor much time in Ideas on Paper, picked up Caboodle and Ambrosia.

Sadly no time for Wired, on to Outpost Coffee where my second cappuccino, even better than the first. An Ethiopian single origin.

Always excellent reading material in Outpost Coffee. All to be found on sale in Ideas on Paper.

Sitting on the shelf Drift Melbourne edition. Sorry, not for sale.

I learnt I was a member of an elite group. Blocked from all 200 Degrees social media accounts.

1621 two-coach train Nottingham to Lincoln standing room only.

At Lincoln, five minutes from train arrival to leaving the station due to the barricades. A guard patrols the train, checks tickets, sells tickets, but hassle at the barrier. Yet another example of the contempt East Midland Trains has for passengers.

 

Cold afternoon in Nottingham

January 30, 2019

A spur of the moment decision, a trip to Nottingham.

Today it was zig-zag back and forth.

I would usually stop off first 200 Degrees Nottingham Station and grab something to eat. And yes I was hungry, but it was packed and I had first to visit Cartwheel Coffee.

On my last visit, I had spotted Drift issue 4 Stockholm edition, impossible to find. I wished to see if would sell to me or swap for a later edition of Drift.

The owner kindly gave it to me. I thanked him, and said I would later drop off a copy of Ambrosia, sister magazine of Drift, with which he was not familiar.

They were in the middle of a coffee cupping session. I asked could I join them. I was welcomed and interesting conversation ensued.

I could have stayed for lunch, but very busy.

Back to 200 Degrees for lunch. Still very busy but this time I managed to find a table, the only unoccupied table.

Looked in Hotel Chocolat. Smoke and mirrors, appalling level of overpackaging, obscene use of plastic.

It was then to Ideas on Paper in Cobden Court.

I was shocked what had been done to Wired. Garish and ugly. Make it look cheap and tacky, like a disgusting junk food outlet. A big mistake.

I looked in where I had been told a zero waste shop. Not open today.

Luckily Ideas on Paper open.

I picked up two issues of Ambrosia. No idea why I picked up the latest, as I already have. Not thinking straight.

I did that last time I found Ideas on Paper open, latest issue of Ambrosia, only to find I already had.

I would have liked to have popped in the chocolate shop, but no time.

Back to Cartwheel Coffee. Dropped off a copy of Ambrosia, picked up Drift.

Excellent cappuccino.

Caught 1529 train. An earlier train thain I would have wished, but turning very very cold.

Afternoon in Nottingham

January 15, 2019

Two-coach East Midlands train Lincoln-Nottingham-Leicester.

It could have been worse, it could have been a clapped out single coach train. At least this train was refurbished and had usb charging points. Though few use as hidden below the seats.

I took the opportunity to charge a power bank. I did not think it needed charging, other than maybe a top up. To my surprise took the entire journey to charge. Failing power bank?

A new stall outside Nottingham Station selling dosa. Too cold for street food but not impressed. Appeared to have been already made, did not look appetising, was then popped in a frying pan, hotted up, ingredients tossed on top.

I was not impressed. Not the way to make a dosa. Nothing like the quality or professionalism of Ollo Foods with a stall on Guildford farmers market.

Lunch at 200 Degrees Nottingham Station overlooking Nottingham Canal.

Tomato soup was something of a disappointment, tasted like tinned soup, but the falafal was was excellent.

200 Degrees is a small chain. Coffee mediocre at best.

Excellent cappuccino at Cartwheel Coffee.

An organic single origin from Honduras.

On sale Frank Green reusable cups. These, together with rCup, are the worst reusable cups on the market.

I suggested get shot of, stock KeepCup or ecoffee bamboo cups. But ideally encourage relax with specialty coffee served in glass or ceramic, discourage takeaway.

I looked in Wired, but who I wished to see was not there.

Their own branded glass KeepCup. Large. I have never seen large before.

Guest coffee Girls Who Grind.

On my last visit I had been told by Outpost Coffee of a nearby zero waste store. I asked of the vegan stall. Cobden Chambers, but not today. I checked, no, not today. A pity, as I wanted muesli, which I had hoped to find.

Ideas on Paper not open. No information to say when open. Annoying as was the reason for my visit.

V60 from Outpost Coffee. They were busy.

I looked again Ideas on Paper. Not open.

Nottingham Station. Long walk down a long platform to waiting train.

Afternoon in Nottingham

September 12, 2018

A train an hour later to Nottingham. I could have caught a train an hour earlier, but as previous visit to Nottingham two weeks ago, with unreliable bus service, would probably have missed, as situation made worse by barriers at the station with station staff refusing to allow passengers to pass through without a ticket even though as soon as the train departs, a guard comes through and will sell a ticket. Train companies hate passengers, they are a bloody inconvenience for whom they have to provide a reliable train service.

Outside Nottingham Station, a coffee kiosk, Nelo’s. Last visit had advised of a coffee shop that I could not find. I asked again.

I noticed a lot more tables outside Hopkinson. Was this my imagination? No, I was assured there was a lot more tables.

Hopkinson is an amazing building, at the moment shrouded in scaffolding and netting. Inside a veritable rabbit warren.

Inside where there was when I last looked, a counter selling tea and coffee. I asked, and what was there now, Hops Coffee House and Bar was new, only been open a month. The tables outside they had been given from an Octoberfest. But what a depressing lost opportunity, beer from corporate chemical factory coffee LavAzza.

Lunch at 200 Degrees, sat overlooking Nottingham Canal.

Lunch at 200 Degrees is excellent, the coffee at best mediocre.

Every town these days has one if not more free glossy magazines. They are always rubbish. The one rare exception Viva Brighton. I have never though seen anything as bad as In Nottingham, which was piled on the shelf where I ate my lunch.

A couple of years ago, Guildford had cows, Brighton snodogs, Lincoln Barons, last year Lincoln Knights, this year tail fins.

Dotted around Nottingham, fat robins, which go under the name of Hoodwinked. Why Hoodwinked I have absolutely no idea.

Following directions given by Nelo’s coffee kiosk, I this time easily found Cartwheel Coffee. A lovely building, next door a cobbler and shoe shop, out the back a courtyard and tea shop, all within the same building, Enfield Chambers.

Cartwheel Coffee roast their own coffee. Looking at the coffee, freshly roasted and very high Q grade, high 80s if not over 90.

I ordered a cappuccino and flapjack. The flapjack contained beetroot, yuk. Maybe I struck lucky, no beetroot, or maybe, a tiny amount for flavour without the vile taste of beetroot. The flapjack excellent.

Cartwheel Coffee is listed in The Great Food Club Handbook 2018, only it is not listed. Confused, so were they. Listed on-line but not in the book. Does one have to pay for a listing in the book, if yes, then the guide lacks all credibility. I was less impressed by 2018 compared with 2017. Places omitted I would list, places listed I would omit.

A quick visit to The Speciality Coffee Shop to see what guest coffee in stock. No time for a coffee.

On my way to Wired I encountered Bartek Dabrowski playing Spanish guitar in the street.

A quick look in Ideas on Paper in Cobden Chambers.

Then to Wired. Sadly who I wished to see not there. I left her a copy of the indie guide to Brighton coffee shops, as she had recently visited Brighton.

They made me a takeaway. Not what I ordered. Before they threw it away, I took it outside to a homeless guy selling Big Issue. He was very grateful.

Then to Outpost Coffee. A V60, no, I changed my mind a V60 Japanese iced coffee. But with an added twist, as James Bond would say, shaken not stirred, shaken in a cocktail shaker. Even though I observed how it was made,I queried what was served, as noticeable difference a different taste.

I just made the train leaving Nottingham at 1721, luckily it was running a couple of minutes late, else I would have missed the train. Not so lucky packed in like sardines. The train service at peak times a disgrace, only two coaches. It should have been at least three coaches.

Afternoon in Nottingham

August 29, 2018

It would have been a day in Nottingham, arrive late morning, but thanks to dysfunctional bus service running at least 12 minutes late, I missed the train, and had to catch the next train an hour later.

The train had usb charging points hidden beneath the seats.

Not seen before, a coffee kiosk outside Nottingham Station, Nelo’s. Cappuccino OK, not great. It would improve if the coffee was ground fresh for each cup. The guy was knowledgeable about coffee, but it needs more than a piece of paper from 200 Degrees to make a barista.

The biscotti biscuit was excellent.

Lunch at 200 Degres near Nottingham Station, but no coffee. Their coffee is not great, though I like the ambience of the coffee shop and the food and cakes are excellent.

I tried to find Cartwright Coffee that the little coffee kiosk and one of his customers had recommended. I could not find nor Jamie Oliver that I was told was nearby.

I asked a passing Black girl but she did not know. I knew Nottingham better tan her, even though she was a local.

She suggested I took a coffee in Pret a Manger. Ha, ha.

It was therefore The Speciality Coffee Shop.

Michelangelo said both his guest coffees even though single origin, were suited to espresso, not filter.

I tried Rwanda from Maude Coffee Roasters. Excellent cappuccino. I asked was a light roast, as was reminded of coffee from Base Camp? I was told yes.

I picked up two bags of coffee.

I looked in Ideas on Paper in Hebden Court. Picked up a copy of Ambrosia San Francisco edition.

I looked in Wired, said hello. I would have liked to have had a cappuccino, but no time. Next time.

On to Outpost Coffee. A V60. I let them choose. A Kenyan coffee, a bit too acidic. Very expensive beans, so expensive, sold in small glass jars. I did not inquire the cost.

On the shelf a Gina cold brew tower which I had not seen before. They brought down onto the counter for me to have a closer look.

V60 emptied into a takeaway cup. A sacrilege I know. But I had a train to catch.

A couple of years ago Guildford had cows dotted around the town, Brighton snowdogs, Lincoln Barons, then last year Knights. Nottingham has Robins. Why Hoodwinked I do not know.

Train 1721. I was very lucky to catch. Were it not for cramming the passengers in like sardines and the time it took to board I would have missed the train.

Afternoon in Nottingham

April 17, 2018

An hour later than I would have wished in Nottingham thanks to appalling bus service, now three weeks running late, missed my train, had to wait an hour for the next train.

On my last visit I only just made the train, but today no.

Lunch at 200 Degrees Nottingham Station overlooking Nottingham Canal.

I skipped coffee. I do not find their house blend great.  I wished to try their guest blend, which I have yet to try, though at their other coffee shop.

I headed off in roughly the right direction.  At Market Square headed off down Friar Lane, which is is not as a the name suggests a pleasant lane, though maybe once was, about to turn around, I found The Speciality Coffee Shop,  where I was greeted by Michelangelo, head barista and co-owner.

Time pressing, I headed back to Market Square to find Ideas on Paper, to pick up a copy of Coffee Shop North and inquire back copies of Standart.

He was popping out, pop back in a few minutes.

I inquired of coffee shops. I was given the same advice as the previous week, exit out of Cobden Chambers, turn left and head off down the street.

This I did, sticking my head in Wired to say hi.

I found nothing, turned on my heals and headed back.

It was then I spotted Outback Coffee.

Back to Ideas on Paper, picked up the only copy Coffee Shop North. No did not have Standart. Experiencing the same problems as everyone else, distribution issues.

Minutes to spare, a cake from 200 Degrees Nottingham Station and hopped on the overcrowded train as it was about to pull out.

Afternoon in Nottingham

April 6, 2018

Last week a fleeting visit to Nottingham, all of 40 minutes, to day a little longer, a few hours.

I arrived around 11-30.

Previously I had passed by an antique shop, this time I popped in. It is huge, three floors, but first I had a woader outside.

Tables and chairs, there must be a coffee shop somewhere.  I folowed murals, but no coffee shop. I was baffled.

Inside, down in the cellar, I found thee was a tea shop. Come back later I was told, we open at twelve.

I did return, and found myself inside ….

I explained, I had wandered around thre builing. Oh yes, there is an entrance.

The buildiing itslef is on three levsls, different pople have different areas. Part of the buildin partined of, which is a pity as destroyes a wonderful building, taht still has the cast iron clomns.

Inside one,a  guyrepairing gusitars.

Then on to 200 degrees, where an excellent lunch, falafel ina weap.

Then I had hoped to find the other 200 degrreesm maybe Specialty Coffee Shop.

I headed off down the road, across a nmain road, then down a narrow road which appeared to be cosed, until nearly ran down by a bus.

Then where? Through a shopping centre, out the other side and int a large square.

Saem crao chains as everyone, fine buidlings ruined by shops fronts, oasiabanally not.

Tnen an alley Cobden Court. Side allweys are alwast the most intestesting streets to explorea nd this wa sno exeption. Lined on one dose with murals. Veert much reminded of Brighton or Neal#s Yard in Covent Gaden.

I find a studi cum cafe Think Cobden Place, Cholate Studio and alter when I returned Idea Paper (which from the name I assumed to be a print studio).

Cholate Studio tild me to retace my steps back to the large square, ten head in the opposiste direct to find Secaility Coffee and 200 degrees, but if I went in the opposite direction, I woudl find more coffee shops.

As I excited Cobden Court, I notice opposite, I did not notice before, Wired.

Appearances can be very deceptive, Looks like a greasy sooon cafe but is not, not when serving Allpress, has on dispaly Standart, Drift, adn London Coffee as reading matearil. Also guest single origin coffee.

Not having seen Drift ina coffee shop, I was told I could probaably obtain Drift Vol 3 Havana in Idaeas in Print, henc emy return to Cobden Court.

Ideas in Print very much like Magaize Brighton top quality magazines like Drift and Standart, aexcept also stoks books.

It wa snow time to retrace my steps, vcaling in 200 degrees Notingham Staion on the way.

Had I foudn theire other coffee shop, what did I think?

Sadly not, maybe another day. I was advised to try another coffee shop, which I will ahve to inquire about next time.

— to be added to —–

Afternoon in Nottingham

March 31, 2018

A very fleeting visit to Nottingham.

Alighting at Nottingham Station, I was surprised at the size of the station.

I exited via a side exit, which was also the exit for the tram into the city centre.

I did not take the tram, as no idea how far to the city centre or how frequent the trams, and preferred to walk.

I followed the sign for city centre at least there was a sign, and found myself at the main entrance.

I could not find what I was looking for 200 Degrees. A Costa and a Gourmet Coffee stall serving Union Hand-Roasted.

I left the station forecourt, passed by tax dodging Starbucks, and there on a corner by a bridge overlooking the Nottingham Canal was 200 Degrees. Not quite the station, but near enough.

A wonderful ambience within, interior much larger than the exterior would suggest.

An enticing array of cakes. Leftovers of lunch. I would imagine lunchtime a wider choice.

I had time for a cappuccino. A cake for tea.

Being so close to the station, why does anyone frequent Costa or Starbucks? And if in the station forecourt why Costa when there is a guy with a stall serving Union-Hand Roasted Coffee.

A very fleeting visit, forty minutes.