An earlier than usual start today. Looking out the window, the streets and cars are glittering due to the thick autumn frost. One thing comes to mind, “Winter is coming” with or without the Ice King.
With this in mind, I wrap up warm, give my tache an extra twizzle and head out.
I’m on my way to check out Kioskafe in Paddington. This little cafe-come-newsstand is an experiment by the team behind Monocle Magazine. I’ve tried to grab a coffee here before but Kiosk seems to suffer from the all to common issue of “cleaning the machine” 15 mins before closing time.
I am a fan of Monocle so was intrigued to discover how Monocle Intended to bring their 2D world to us living in the 3D, I wonder if it would be as good as the Monocle cafe just off Baker Street?
Marrying both Coffee and International print publications along with their trademark Monocle aesthetics, I knew I’d love the place.
Upon entering, I am greeted with the friendly smell of print and coffee. Kioskafe seats around 6 people in total, I order a flat white and (lucky) take a seat by the window.
While I wait I decided to browse the “newsstand”, apparently there are 150 magazines to pick from, everything from monthlies, quarterlies, annuals and newspapers from all around the globe, plus another 2500 newspapers to print-on-demand, a print aficionados paradise.
Back at my seat, my flat white awaits. At first glance it looks a little poorly, like it came right out of a tabletop coffee maker, No thick silky smooth crema, it’s practically naked! Brewed using the Redchurch (Brazil, Colombia, Guatemala and Sumatra) blend from Allpress I’m expecting it to taste better than it looks.
Although it didn’t look the part it definitely delivers on the flavour, slightly acid with caramel notes.
That said this was not a great or even a good flat white, coming in at £3 this is one of the most expensive flat whites out there.
There’s no wifi and I didn’t spot any power outlets, so if you’re planning to crank out some tasks on your to-do list, you better come prepared.
On the upside, the publications do not disappoint. There is something here for everyone, the Monocle travel guides are a personal favourite and it’s great to see the range cover so many destinations.
Based on today’s coffee experience and especially when compared with ‘Monocle cafe’ i would not recommend Kioskafe for a caffeine pitstop. Adding to the damp coffee experience I was surprised with the response when I asked “how many ounces the flat white was?” answer “we don’t know”.
I would recommend Kioskafe to my friends but only if they’re looking for something unique and wish to indulge in an international publication.
The staff and friendly and attentive but need some training to bring them up to scratch. Plus a note to the team responsible for merchandising; Please can you avoid overstocking the shelves above the seating area, I kept thinking I would end up with a back issue of Monocle magazine landing on my head.
One thing I couldn’t help but notice is accessibility, it seems like wheelchair access would be a challenge, it would a shame if many were deterred from enjoying all those brilliant publications just because access was an issue.
As you can tell I was excited to visit Kioskafe even after my previous rejection 15mins before closing. I thought my bias for Monocle would get the better of me and It would’ve if the coffee was up to standard.
Overall Cult Rating: 2.5 out of 5.
Opening times: Mon – Sun 07.00 – 19.00 (more like 18:45ish)
Power point: No