Reviews

Pinnock’s coffee – Ripley, Surrey,UK

What a JOY.

This visit turned my day around. Whilst out and about, on the way back home, I took a short detour to check out a coffee house that a year ago provide refuge for me and my cycling partner (and as it turned out, many others – it’s very popular). A short detour off the A3, in the beautiful English village of Ripley.

The coffee first. It’s hard to over state the quality of the coffee; and it’s clear that this is what the house revolves around. It takes centre stage, in the room, and in the ambiance. Russell takes great pride in pouring the perfect temperature water over organic beans, sourced locally from a roastery in Woking, UK, while his young, and very polite staff rush around tending to the customers. It’s clear that they’ve worked hard to industrialise a truly artisan Pour Over process, but ensuring that in no way is the quality compromised. Speed is added by having lots of staff, streamlining the process of ordering – then your coffee is brought over, and the lining up of the Pour Overs. "PinnocksThe menu is short and sweet, and whilst the Ploughman’s left my socks still firmly "on", the ability to still get a proper Ploughman’s in England is enough to keep me happy. Besides, frankly they could serve whatever the hell they feel like, so long as the coffee stays as-is. In contrast, I remember last year having a lovely granola/fruit/yoghurt affair that was worth writing home about, so win some/lose some. The ambiance is worth it alone – I didn’t see anyone in Costa showing a young child how to make hot chocolate, and I certainly can’t get a Ploughman’s. Thinking back to the the Costa debarcle and the £2.20 price tag makes me feel a little nauseous compared to this. Thank the Lord I have this Pour Over to wash it down. One more please Russell!” target=”_blank”>Pinnock’s is an independent, homely, coffee house, which has struck the perfect balance between relaxed spaciousness, but the hum of industry.

Much of the industriousness is provided by the Barista Russell. Except he’s not a Barista. Not in the way the term is generally used – to serve coffee by operating an espresso machine – because there is no espresso machine. No chrome bandit proudly displayed on the counter top. No banging of grinds, or blowing of steam. This is a Pour Over only coffee house. Now, I’m an espresso lover from London, and these two facts are important: 1) It takes a lot to persuade me to take anything other than espresso. 2) London is the home of fads (well, second to America). Anything like a “Pour Over Only”, is going to be subject to some serious scrutiny from me. So, I sit here, with a Ploughman’s on my left, Pour Over on my right, and an ear to ear smile in between.

THIS IS HOW COFFEE SHOULD BE.

The coffee first. It’s hard to over-state the quality of the coffee; and it’s clear that this is what the house revolves around. It takes centre stage, in the room, and in the ambience. Russell takes great pride in pouring the perfect temperature water over organic beans, sourced locally from a roaster in Woking, UK, while his young, and very polite staff rush around tending to the customers. It’s clear that they’ve worked hard to industrialise a truly artisan Pour Over process, but ensuring that in no way is the quality compromised. Speed is added by having lots of staff, streamlining the process of ordering – then your coffee is brought over, and the lining up of the Pour Overs.

The menu is short and sweet, and whilst the Ploughman’s left my socks still firmly “on”, the ability to still get a proper Ploughman’s in England is enough to keep me very happy. Besides, frankly they could serve whatever the hell they feel like, so long as the coffee stays as-is. In contrast, I remember last year having a lovely granola/fruit/yoghurt affair that was worth writing home about, so win some/lose some. The ambiance is worth it alone – I didn’t see anyone in Costa showing a young child how to make hot chocolate, and I certainly can’t get a Ploughman’s. Thinking back to the the Costa debarcle and the £2.20 price tag makes me feel a little nauseous compared to this.

Thank the Lord I have this Pour Over to wash it down. One more please Russell!

Note – this article was originally posted in 2015

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