All posts tagged: travel

How I spent 48 hours in Amsterdam: Sweet Cup

It’s the driftwood, the succulents and the adorable basset hound that make you feel like you’re in Lisa Rooimans and Paul van Duuren’s living room. And that’s exactly what they were going for. A warm inviting space where customers would receive personal attention. It’s not often you find a speciality coffee shop (and microroastery) that promotes pourovers over espresso-based drinks. Sweet Cup is that shop. And after I tasted my V60, which Lisa recommended I let cool before my first sip, I understood why. If you’re in a rush, head buried in your phone, you’ll easily miss Sweet Cup’s discreet but beautiful storefront on Lange Leidsedwarsstraat. And you’ll completely miss one of the best coffee experiences in Amsterdam. There’s a lesson in that.    

Here’s where to find the best coffee in Johannesburg: Father Coffee

There’s a Charles Bukowski quote that goes “We don’t even ask (for) happiness. Just a little less pain.” And that’s really all I ever ask for. I mean, if you had to ask me what I look for in a good restaurant, it’s only this: room temperature butter. Everything else will follow if there’s room temperature butter. That’s why I like Father Coffee. The attention to detail. In their roasting. In their coffee. And in their spaces. One of the co-founders, Nicholas, said it best in a Humans of Coffee interview I did with him: First and foremost we’re a coffee roastery and espresso bar. We’re hoping to improve the state of the coffee industry in South Africa by helping grow an informed and excited consumer. We put a huge amount of effort and consideration into everything we do, from sourcing, to roasting, to brewing and to our communications with our customers. Father Coffee is also an incredible place to hang out, whether you’re in Braamfontein or Rosebank. If I had to choose between the two shops, …

This is my favourite coffee shop in Paris

I’ve been to Paris a few times now. Enough to not need to climb the Eiffel Tower. Enough to not need to see the Mona Lisa. Enough to not need to eat a Nutella crepe. Enough to have favourite coffee shop. When I first popped into Fragments I had to wait for a seat to open up. I grabbed a take away coffee and waited outside. The notes of caramel and nuts in my flat white were as delicious as the notes of music coming from the big box speakers on the floor. I finished that cup at a table next to the bar. And before I ordered another, I had fallen in love. As one does in Paris. It’s not that the coffee was excellent. Which it was. It’s not that the service was thoughtful. Which it was. I fell in love with Fragments for the very same reason I fell in love with my wife. She’s a young lady with an old soul. Trying to capture everything that Fragments is with a photograph …

How about some coffee in New York?

“Welcome to New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of, there’s nothing you can’t do.” These words perfectly describe New York. Perfectly describe the coffee scene. Perfectly describe the people there. I have had the massive privilege of travelling to the amazing New York City twice in the past six months. I have experienced, seen and tasted so much awesomeness that it only seems fair that I share such experiences with you. If you are a coffee lover, love experiences and want to know where to get the best cup in the Big Apple, then this article is for you. I first want to preface this article by telling you what the coffee scene is like in this City. One word comes to mind: explosive. Absolutely explosive. I was in the city for over three weeks and every day I made it my mission to visit at least two to three stores a day. I wanted to meet baristas, I wanted them to make and tell me about their coffee and take some nice …

Here’s why your next holiday needs to be to Vietnam

Viet Nam, a diverse Southeast Asian country bordering Cambodia, Laos, and China, has a lot to offer to a curious traveler, with the sprawling Mekong River Delta and non-stop rhythm of Saigon in the South, relaxed rural pace of Hoi An in the country’s center, and the stunning landscapes surrounding the capital, Hanoi, in the North. Charting a course from the South to the North, let’s embark on an in-depth exploration of this fascinating country, with stops below serving as guideposts to your own journey. South Vietnam: The energy, youth, and future of Viet Nam is here, in Saigon (officially known as Ho Chi Minh City). So is the foreign investment, the startups, and the momentum. The city is on fire and does not stop; there are more motorbikes than people in this metropolitan of more than 8 million – cross the roads at your own risk! The city is divided into 24 districts. Most visitors stay in Districts 1 and 2, but a more authentic experience awaits outside of this overdeveloped, backpacker-friendly scene. Districts …

How I spent 48 hours in London

When I first visited London I had just broken up with my girlfriend. I was heartbroken. Depressed. Miserable. Much like the weather. This time, however, I was there with my wife. The trip was part of our fifth wedding anniversary celebration. And it was perfect. Like her. As usual, I checked out Travelstart for the best price. And as usual, Ethiopian Airlines had the best price. I found the hotel at Booking.com. Although, this time I wish I used Airbnb. More about that crap hotel in another blog post. Anyway, back to how I did London. I did coffee. Are you surprised? I visited only 4 spots in 2 days. I’m a proponent of the “too much of a good thing is bad” theory. Although I forget that regularly with sushi. Or Haagan Dazs. Or Krispy Kreme. I digress. Here’s a little photo essay that’ll give you a taste of where I went. Kaffeine Monmouth Coffee Company, Covent Garden Monocole Café Prufrock Coffee Monmouth Coffee Company, Borough Market My thoughts overall I loved each shop. …

There’s a coffee culture brewing in Saigon. You just have to know where to find it.

The day I first set foot on a Saigon street by myself, without anyone demanding my attention, a cacophony of honking, scooters speeding by, and construction work greeted my morning. I took out from my pocket a newly bought reporter style notebook. In it is a list of cafés I curated myself from various blogs, writing down the ones that caught my interest – making sure I wrote each one’s idiosyncrasy. Most of them were within a two-kilometer radius from where I stayed so everything was a few minutes’ walk. Which café to visit all came down to an arbitrary decision. Never has the selection process of where to drink coffee been this interesting Being a tourist, I did not care to equip myself a local phone plan. That meant that my connectivity to the rest of the world and Google was kept within the walls of my apartment. Nevertheless, I had managed to load the route to the day’s choice café. After a few minutes’ saunter in the Saigon heat, I found that I …

This looks like a must-visit coffee shop in Toronto

Is it too late to say sorry? I’m not even sure how this post got so delayed and thus forgotten… Sorry Coffee Co. was the first coffee shop I visited in 2016 because it was a high priority on my ‘to visit’ list. I’m so glad to say I wasn’t disappointed and it turned out to be better than I could imagine! Sorry Coffee Co. was a newly opened coffee shop inside of the store Kit and Ace on Bloor street, in the Yorkville area. I wasn’t exactly sure where the store was so I wandered around Bloor street till I came across Kit and Ace and went straight to the back. The coffee area is quite small in size, a nice cozy space in the back of the retail store. I was fortunate when I went inside there were still a few seats unoccupied so I snagged a window seat! I loved the décor around the café, it was modern, clean and minimalistic which was perfect for photos! I went up to the marble …

Humans of coffee: Brett Rogers

Who is Brett Rogers? Thats a strong philosophical start to this interview! I’m not sure we have enough time for me to self analyse. 🙂 That said, I’m a good guy who was raised right. I have strong opinions with the strength of character to stand behind them, as well as being humble enough to listen to differing views. I have great friends, great family, and a killer music collection. I swear a lot, I cant resist sparkling wine, I adore art and anything aesthetically pleasing. I’m a person who wants to do things, so generally I say yes to things and give a solid account of myself. My chameleonic talents allow for me to learn quickly. I’m terrible at maths, remembering faces. I cant make rice, but make a mean spaghetti Aglio e Olio. I love fashion, the colour black, conversations and debates. I prefer consciousness over blind happiness. What is your best childhood memory? My family holidays in Knysna are some of my happiest. I have an incredibly large family and we all used to congregate over December at my …

Matt Preston does a delicious tour of Cape Town food & coffee spots

  Without a doubt, my favorite of the Masterchef franchise is Masterchef Australia. It’s where I was introduced to Matt Preston – who has done as much for the Australia food scene as he has done for the humble cravat. I came across this piece he did for Delicious.com.au about the food & coffee scene in Cape Town. It was written in November but still very relevant. It’s making my mouth water for another trip to Cape Town. While we’re on the topic, here’s my idea of how to spend the perfect weekend in Cape Town.