Freestate Coffee // London

Name: Freestate Coffee

Location: 23 Southampton Row, London

Closest Tube Stop: Holborn

Hours: Monday-Friday 7am-7pm, Saturday & Sunday 9am-6pm

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Vibe: Relaxed and easy. Their aesthetic is a bit dark, with lots of wood and dimmed light. The mood always seems to reflect the moody London weather which I always appreciated. The staff will always greet you and you will always feel welcomed into this dark, moody cafe.

Wifi: Yep!

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Coffee & Food: Freestate is super close to where I went to school, so I frequented this spot a lot. I’ve gotten everything from tea and coffee to salads, sandwiches, porridge and brownies. This is really like one stop shopping. Everything that I tried was delish, but I will say that my favorite thing was their salted caramel brownie. It’s AMAZING. Sadly, they don’t have it every day (which is a good thing or else I would have gotten one every single day). So if you see it, snatch it up or you’ll be sorry!! I take their tea over their mochas. Their mochas always tasted burnt to me, but nonetheless I still ordered them from time to time. They also have bomb croissants and salads. Everything tastes fresh and like a party in your mouth.

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Seating: I can’t believe that for all the times I went I never snatched a photo of the entire space. They have a decent amount of seating, though. However, sometimes if it’s all filled (which it is regularly) then it starts to feel pretty cramped. It’s pretty hit or miss with the seating as to if you’ll get a good seat. But always worth a shot!

Overall: In my best of London guide, I listed Freestate as having the friendliest staff. And it’s true. They knew me by name and were always so pleasant and happy to see anyone, but especially their regulars. They knew what I wanted and would sometimes even save me a salted caramel brownie. #winning Overall, if you’re looking for a spot that has good feels, good food and good people, this is it.

As always, you can follow along by following @musingsovermochas

Best of London

London is an epicenter of intriguing culture, fun and flare. And with that, there’s no shortage of exciting foods to eat, things to see and memories to be made. One of my favorite parts about London is that no matter how long you live there, there’s always something new around the corner. But for tourists or extended stay visitors like me, it can become overwhelming because you never feel like you’re experiencing enough. So today, I’ve rounded out some of my favorite things that I discovered in the four months I was there.


F O O D 

for the best avocado toast, go to: Granger & Co. 

photo via Instagram… I ate mine before thinking to take a pic… oops

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for the best brunch, go to: Dishoom

pro tip: order the naan roll… it’s so good I asked them for the recipe!

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for pancakes that will change your life, go to: The Breakfast Club 

pro tip: the berries and cream pancakes are without a doubt the best thing on the menu!

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for the freshest lunch, go to: Ottolenghi Spitalfields

pro tip: the salmon, aubergine and broccoli are my faves!

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for the times you need some veggies, go to: Juice Baby

pro tip: it’s pretty difficult to get to, but totally worth it… especially for their “healthy” desserts

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for when you’re feeling juicy, go to: Roots & Bulbs 

pro tip: they’re one of the only businesses around that area that has free wifi… thank god

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for your sweet tooth, go to: Primrose Bakery

pro tip: the convent garden location is the best one

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for ice cream that will make you scream, go to: Chin Chin Labs 

pro tip: they also have probably the best hot chocolate in all of London!

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C O F F E E    S H O P S 

for the perfect mocha, go to: Milk Bar

pro tip: when it comes, you won’t think it’s anything special… but it’s AMAZING (pic via)

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for the friendliest staff, go to:  Freestate Coffee 

pro tip: their salted caramel brownie is to die for! You must get it!

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for the best ambiance, go to: The Attendant 

pro tip: they have two locations and strangely, I prefer the roomier one in Shoreditch over the original one which is an old loo (still totally worth a visit)

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for the hottest men, go to:  Association Coffee

pro tip: you better look cute because this is a gem of a find for men in London

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for the perfect Instagram, go to: Holborn Grind

pro tip: I’ve said it before but I’m still curious about the increase in business due to neon signs.

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E X P E R I E N C E S

for an unconventional tea time, go to: Sketch

pro tip: you must take a trip to the bathroom… it’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen!

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for the most unique cocktails and cool crowd, go to: The Book Club

pro tip: order nothin’ but a gin thang (pic via Instagram)

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for (free!!) sweeping views of the city, go to: The Sky Garden 

pro tip: book ahead and you won’t have to wait!

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for a look into a grittier, cooler London, go to: Shoreditch for street art 

pro tip: if you’re even mildly interested in street art, take this tour and you’ll become full blown obsessed

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What are some of your favorite spots in London?

Knockbox Coffee // London

Name: Knockbox Coffee 

Location: 29 Lambs Conduit Street, London WC1N 3NG

Closest Tube Stop: Holborn, Chancery Lane or Russell Square

Hours: Monday-Friday 7:30am-6pm, Saturday 8am-5pm, Sunday 9am-5pm

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Vibe: It’s a super small shop and the seating is kind of weird. But it has a low-key good time vibe, perfect for sweeping up some caffeine on the way to work.

Wifi: Yep- it’s on the board right as you walk in

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Coffee & Food: This place ended up becoming a problem for me because it was on my morning commute which meant…. almond milk mochas all day every day. I’m serious guys, the AMM’s are SO good. The perfect amount of milk and coffee and chocolate. Mmmmm. Craving it now! Their food is pretty bomb too. From the croissants to the toasties (oh, and can’t forget the brownies!), you can’t go wrong.

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Seating: The seating, I have to say, is a little bleak. It’s a small shop and the only inside seating is around the edge, looking out the window. They also have some outdoor seating, but London weather only permits that… oh right, never. I usually end up taking it to go.

Overall: Knockbox makes the top of my list for London coffee shops, mainly because I’m mildly obsessed with their almond milk mochas. It doesn’t bother me that I don’t feel like I can sit because the mocha is so damn good. If you’re in the area, make sure to check them out. They’re amaze.

For real-time updates, make sure to follow me on Instagram 

Holborn Grind // London

Name: Holborn Grind

Location: 199 High Holborn, London WC1V 7BD

Closest Tube Stop: Holborn

Hours: Monday-Friday 7am-11:30pm, Saturday 9am-12am, Sunday 9am-7pm

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Vibe: This is such a cool spot because it’s a coffee bar by day and late night espresso bar by night. Depending on the time of the day, it’s totally different. I tend to prefer the mornings as it’s open, light and relaxed. As you move more towards the afternoon/evening, it becomes much more crowded and a bit more hectic.

Wifi: Yep!

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Coffee & Food: Besides their mochas being so pretty, they also taste so yummy! You know me, it’s hard to find a satisfying mocha these days, but this one did the trick. Nice and chocolately but still the right amount of coffee flavor. I’ve also had their tea which for some reason, tasted off to me… so stick with the mocha! As for the food, I wasn’t crazy about their croissant and brownie. It looks like it’s sitting out there for a long time and both were rather dry. Stick to the coffee.

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Seating: Oops. No pictures of seating other than this one, but it’s a pretty small shop, so there’s not an abundance. There’s some along the front and side windows and then a few like the picture above. I personally like to take the coffee to go, and snap a pic (or seventeen) of this neon sign.

Overall: I’d love to know the stats on the increase of customers due to cute neon signs. If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I have a major obsession with them, so when I found this spot, I was over the moon. However, I have to say, if they didn’t have the neon sign, I’m not sure if I would like this spot as much. I love the light airiness of it and it’s aesthetically pleasing, but the staff is just okay and the food is subpar. So coffee to go is the way to go.

For real-time updates, make sure to follow me on Instagram