From kimchee grilled cheese to blueberry pancakes to a killer flat white, Hackney Road’s Lanark Coffee serves up some of the area’s best brews and bites — and with an adorable dog to boot! We popped in to dish about their local favorites and more.
How did Lanark Coffee come about?
We opened three years ago. There’s a furniture workshop in the basement — my friend makes furniture — he found this space and it had a shop front and he wasn’t going to use it. And that was it. I’d been saving up for a while, I think by that point I already had an espresso machine and a grinder ready to go. And then we painted the walls and the floor; we didn’t have any seats the first day. It’s been a work in progress since then.
What attracted you to East London?
To be honest there’s not many places you could do the sort of thing Lanark is doing, East London is one of them. There’s a market for it here; everyone embraces independent stuff.
Are there any local businesses in particular that have supported you that we could give a shout-out to?
Yeah definitely, Dark Arts Coffee and Black Box Coffee. We’ve all been around for about the same time and have helped each other out in various ways.
Do you have a favorite local business?
Embassy East is the best cafe in London, in my opinion, by a long shot. It’s basically where people from the industry go, when I go in there I meet other coffee guys. It’s just a reasonably priced, huge place with delicious brunch. It’s like your favorite musician’s favorite band or something, they’ve inspired so many little spots around.
What does the future look like for you guys?
Me and my girlfriend do a night of Polish food called Polski Sklep at the Laughing Heart — a wine bar and restaurant just down the street. We want to do something with that. I don’t want to expand, it’s just too much stress. Right now all the energy is focused here; we’ve got such a cool crowd of regulars. So just more of the same.
What made you join Colu?
Your guy came in with a little dog, and we were just like yes, amazing. It totally softened our defenses, because I usually just automatically say no to any sales pitches. I wasn’t sure if it was going to be a pain, but it’s not. It’s nice — we’ve had a couple hundred pounds worth of Colu purchases. And I think our plan is to use it as a bonus scheme. We’re going to try to get enough money for the staff here to go on a night out. It’s a nice way of remembering to treat ourselves and to put something aside. I also like the idea of keeping the East London Pounds to spend locally instead of cashing out.
Whether you’re after a quick coffee or a fresh and tasty lunch, Lanark hits it out of the park! Check out their Instagram to see what they’re up to next!