Tuesday, 17 November 2015

A Guide To Durham Coffee Shops

When literally every other establishment in town is a coffee shop, narrowing the overwhelming choice down to an elite few is tricky business. Unless you're also doing Sociology and Harry Potter modules, you probably don't have all the time in the world to sample every offering. Fear not, I'm here to guide you.

Velvet Elvis
An extension to the vintage shop below (which originated from a market stall), Velvet Elvis is hipster central. With views of the river and castle it's the perfect little lunch spot. Its rustic interior is decked out with Persian rugs, mysterious cabinets and chairs wearing jeans. The Arctic Monkeys lyrics scrawled across the walls compliment the soundtrack of #indie tunes. Coffee is served in glasses on vintage saucers, with beautiful latte art of course. The surprisingly cheap menu is trendy with offerings such as meze platters, salted caramel fudge brownie and hummus & pitta. There's even a range of milkshakes which incorporate entire donuts and waffles! The staff are also genuinely friendly and add to the laid back atmosphere.

Overall Rating: 10/10

Leonard's Coffee House
Leonard's is tucked away on Silver Street and spread over two floors with outside seating so doesn't get quite as crowded as the rest of Durham's more confined coffee shops. It's also wheelchair accessible which is a rare bonus in town. It has a homely feel with squashy sofas and cute fairy lights strung around decorative quotes. Leonard's has a gorgeous selection of cakes and treats as well as a few brunch options. Coffees are always smooth and the fudge latte (served with additional fudge pieces) is dreamy. This one would be a cosy choice for a date.

Overall Rating: 8/10

Chapters has more of a traditional coffee shop feel with polished wooden furnishings and smartly dressed waiters. With an extensive list of syrups ranging from cherry to amaretto and a tempting cabinet of fresh bakes, there's always something new to try. The bar stools by the window make for an excellent people watching perch and the modern playlist (weirdly heavy on Emeli Sandé) encourages a chatty atmosphere. Situated on the edge of Elvet Bridge, Chapters is handy for a quick caffeine break between lectures and a good option for when parents visit.

Overall Rating: 7/10

Love, Anna x