Wednesday, March 04, 2009

While partaking of my usual West End walk, I came across a quaint little cafe on New Oxford Street called Wild & Wood Coffee. I wouldn't ordinarily have stopped to go in, as I was on my way to meet a friend for drinks, but a) I was hungry , b) saw a Monmouth Coffee sign in the window and c) after all the stress of today, decided I deserved a treat, so inside I went. I'd seen this place before, while on my way back from dance class, but have never passed by while this cafe was open.

There're also a sign stating that they use organic milk from Jersey. I'm guessing that the cafe operates along more sustainable lines, between the organic milk, local coffee, and wooden furniture, but more on that later.

As it was ten minutes to closing time, I ordered a skinny cappuccino to go (£1.90), as well as a slice of mud cake (£1.60), just to be completely decadent. After ordering, it was only then that I noticed all of the furniture and most of the wall panels were made out of wood. On top of that, they were interestingly shaped. I love wooden things. I really do. I can't explain why. I couldn't help but comment on this to the barista (a male with a beard who spoke with a most British accent) and he informed me that all of the wood from the cafe had originally come from a church. No, silly, they didn't steal any of it, just that the tables were made out of what I now recognised as church pews, while the walls were covered with wooden floor slats.


The cafe isn't that big, and I can imagine it can get pretty crowded, especially on weekends, given the proximity to Oxford Circus. Not yet, said the man. The cafe had only been open for two months, so not too many people know about it yet.

On to the quality of the coffee and the cake. The cappuccino was good. But then again, Monmouth coffee is wonderful. It really is. 'Nuff said.

After taking one bite of the deliciously rich chocolate mud cake, I decided to save it until I returned home so that I could heat it up and enjoy it while it was nice and warm. And man, it was worth the three hour wait to taste it. Nice and moist on the inside, and a little crispy on the outside (probably due to my warming it in the oven). It reminded me of Konditor & Cook's Boston brownie without the tartness of the cranberries (which sounds pretty much like a plain brownie, except that I haven't tried their plain brownies yet).

In addition to coffee and cake, Wild & Wood Coffee also sell savoury tarts, pies and muffins. They also sell - get this - truffles from Clarke's! I've not tried them yet, but Sally Clarke's brownies are supposed to be among the best in London, so her chocolate truffles can't be too bad!

With all of these things, I can't possibly see this cafe remaining quiet for long. I plan to return soon with some friends, as I told the proprietor. I'd love to take photos of the decor.

Address: 1 New Oxford Street, London, WC1A 1BA (near punnily named wine shop Planet of the Grapes)

Related Link: bellaphon's review (with photos)

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