Posts Tagged ‘latte’

Cappuccino and latte at Stokes on High Bridge

April 25, 2017

Stokes used to set the standard for coffee.  Either they are going downhill or my taste is improving, not sure which.

A cappuccino that looked yuk, the taste was not great either.

I checked the beans on sale in jars, none had a pleasant aroma.

I was told the light roast not suited for espresso.

Not true. Try telling that to Makushi, single source, traced back to farm, light roast.

The least worst was beans from Nicaragua.  Medium roast

I was told roast earlier in the week or last week.

Then when they were weighed out, I checked again, told roast 17 February.

No way.

I settled for a blend, that is meant to emulate Blue Mountain.

They offered to grind.

No way.

As I write,  the aroma fills the room.

My cappuccino, and I assume the latte too, was from an espresso blend.

I headed up Steep Hill to Makushi, looking in Madame Waffle on the way where they source beans from Square Mile Coffee Roasters.

Cappuccino and latte at Stokes on High Bridge

February 16, 2017

The third wave is, in many ways, a reaction. It is just as much a reply to bad coffee as it is a movement toward good coffee. – Trish R Skeie, Wrecking Ball Coffee Roasters

A cappuccino and latte plus a cookie at Stokes on High Bridge.

Cookie was excellent, but mixed feelings about the coffee.

We have third coffee wave, little indie coffee shops, small indie coffee roasters, coffee plantations, all working together to bring you the best in a cup of coffee.

The roasters go to the plantation, to ensure the best growing conditions, the best beans are then picked. Next stage is how the beans are extracted and washed. The coffee roaster attempt to bring out the best character of the beans. Finally the barista coaxes the best the beans can offer.

Get any part of the chain wrong, and you will have poor quality coffee.

Stokes, instead of moving forward embracing this third wave, are not standing still, they are regressing.

A latte should look good,  that is why it is served in glass. In Stokes, up until a couple of weeks ago, served an excellent latte, not any more.

A barista will take pride, not only in how the cappuccino is brewed but also in the art.

This used to be true of Stokes, not any more.

What is going wrong? Nothing like asking.

Orders from head office.  We have to serve the classic Italian cappuccino.  Repeated like an automaton with no great faith in what they were saying.

No, Italy does not serve great coffee. This is to go backwards.

It is a myth Italy is associated with good coffee. That myth has arisen because the Italians invented the espresso machine, though the French may beg to differ.

The myth that Italy is synonomous with quality coffee, is just that, a myth.

Italy invented the espresso machine, though the French may wish to dispute this.

It was the French who first applied steam to drive water under pressure through coffee.

In 1818, Mr Laurens of Paris used a percolator system to create coffee. Further refinements by Louis Bernard Rabaut in 1822.

It was not until the early 1900s Italians came on the scene.

antique espresso machine

antique espresso machine

In 1901, Luigi Bezzera created a primitive espresso machine.

It was not until post-WWII we had the forerunner of the modern espresso machine.

It was Italian Fascists who coined the term barista, to differentiate from the American barman.

The world has moved on from bad Italian coffee, leave that to the likes of Costa, with their over roasted coffee.

And speaking of Costa. Stokes has appointed a training manager, from er, Costa!

Stokes is a very old coffee business, dating from 1902, now a fourth generation family business.  The current location of Stokes on High Bridge, in a Tudor building on a Norman Bridge over the River Witham dates from 1937.

Stokes have recently acquired The Lawn, though begs the question when will it open? It will serve coffee, roast coffee, run coffee classes. Though why has the Joseph Banks Conservatory been relocated? A key feature of The Lawn.

The service of late in Stokes on High Bridge has been abyssal. Today service was much improved.

The River Witham, which runs beneath Stokes, was today running very fast and very muddy.

From Waterstone’s, four copies of The Spy. Strictly speaking, swapped four copies. Waterstone’s stick stickers on the front of their books, which damage the books.

Outside Waterstone’s, between Stokes and The Stonebow, a  man was playing a saxophone. He was quite good, but why oh why ghastly backing music? It would have been far better, a sax on its own.

A little further up the High Street, Richard Silvester playing violin. I suggested he recorded and released on bandcamp. He asked what would did I like? Paganini.

Coffee Aroma Coffee House

January 28, 2016
Coffee Aroma Coffee House

Coffee Aroma Coffee House

Coffee Aroma Coffee House

Coffee Aroma Coffee House

Lincoln is spoilt for choice for quality coffee.

The obvious is Stokes on High Bridge, then there is Stokes at The Collection, plus there are many indie coffee shops that serve Stokes coffee, for example Café 44 in Sincil Street, though if I am going to drink Stokes coffee, I may as well go to their coffee shop on the High Bridge.

An indie coffee shop I have never tried, is Coffee Aroma Coffee House, or Coffee Aroma.

I was at Springbok Computers having my laptop serviced, and an excuse to try the coffee, asked Matthew if he would like a coffee.

Very nice atmosphere downstairs, packed out. I did not look upstairs.

I was surprised at the number of staff serving.

A cappuccino for me, caramel latte for Matthew.

I watched the coffees being prepared, always a pleasure to watch skilled baristas at work.

One of the girls, when she saw I was taking the coffees away offered me a tray to carry with. Would you like it back, I asked? No, it can be recycled. Basically the same as would put eggs in, except shaped for takeaway coffee cups.

Coffee Aroma Coffee House is located off the High Street below The Stonebow in the centre of Lincoln.

With such an excellent choice of quality coffee and tea in Lincoln, it begs the question why anyone drinks the disgusting stuff they serve in Costa, Caffe Nero or tax-dodging Starbucks.

New Year’s Eve Cappuccino and Latte in Stokes

December 31, 2014
latte, cappuccino and cookie

latte, cappuccino and cookie

A cold morning in Lincoln.

Made it to Stokes on High Bridge, the place for coffee in Lincoln, if not England, a little after ten o’clock. Luckily not yet packed.

Stokes on High Bridge is the gold standard by which lesser coffees are judged.



A fourth generation family business, Stokes has been of the coffee and tea business since 1902, at their present location in a beautiful Tudor building on High Bridge, a Medieval Bridge with Norman foundations, since 1937.

At the moment the building is shrouded in scaffolding and netting.

Lincoln is unusual, in that it has a large number of indy coffee shops, many serving Stokes coffee and teas, but a few serving other quality coffees. Contrast that with other towns dominated by Costa and tax-dodging Starbucks, serving disgusting undrinkable coffee and factory cakes.

Shop and tiny coffee shop are on the ground floor. The two upper floors serve food, each with its own kitchen, serve meals from fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Stokes even list their local suppliers.

Coffee roasted by Stokes, freshly ground and brewed within seconds of grinding.

Contrast with the chains, and most so-called coffee shops, inferior beans, over-roasted, long past sell-by-date, ground, then left, then coffee made by someone who may wear the sweatshirt, but it certainly does not make them a barista.

brew bar

brew bar

For the connoisseur, Stokes has a brew bar, half a dozen speciality coffees, hot water poured on the ground beans in a funnel, filtered, to give that perfect coffee. The process has more skill, than my simple description would suggest.

Stokes have changed their website. A pity as it is appalling. Their webmaster clearly not of the calibre of their master coffee roasters and baristas.

Christmas Eve Cappuccino and Latte in Stokes

December 24, 2014
cappuccino and latte

cappuccino and latte

Before ten o’clock, and room in Stokes on High Bridge, after that packed.

Latte and cappuccino at Caffe Macchiato

May 28, 2014
latte and cappuccino at Caffe Macchiato

latte and cappuccino at Caffe Macchiato

Latte and cappuccino at Caffe Macchiato.

Cappuccino and latte at patisserie amelie

May 22, 2014
cappuccino and latte

cappuccino and latte

Too cold for a freddo cappuccino at patisserie amelie, so decided on a cappuccino. It was so so.

Cappuccino and latte at Stokes on High Bridge

January 7, 2014
latte and cappuccino and cookie

latte and cappuccino and cookie

Excellent cappuccino and latte and oatmeal cookie at Stokes on High Bridge, but then I expect no less from Stokes.

Few people in Stokes on High Bridge, where I stopped for a coffee. Come ten o’clock, they will be busy until four o’clock.

It was on to Stokes for coffee roasting. I was too late, they had finished roasting, but they said, come back in an hour, they would be roasting.

Cappuccino and latte at Stokes on High Bridge

December 24, 2013
coffee beans

coffee beans



cappuccino and latte and cookie

cappuccino and latte and cookie

Excellent cappuccino and latte at Stokes on High Bridge, but then I expect no less from Stokes.

I knew to get there before ten o’clock as from ten onwards, packed, but already busy and had to wait for a table in their little coffee shop. I looked upstairs, packed.

Sad not to find the staff from last year.

It is a pity Stokes were not able to acquire next door and expand their coffee shop. It has been taken over by a tacky pie shop, which lowers the tone and is completely out of character with the building.

Top Story in Daily Cup of Joe (Boxing Day Thursday 26 December 2013).

Latte and freddo cappuccino at patisserie amelie

September 21, 2013
latte and freddo cappuccino

latte and freddo cappuccino

Latte and freddo cappuccino at patisserie amelie.

Mid-morning, clear blue sky, 32C.

Nine o’clock this evening, 26C.