The centre of Scarborough is the surprising location for Roasters, a smashing coffee shop.
Before my first visit I spent the night in a tent, in the rain, above Robin Hood’s Bay. I learnt a valuable lesson: do not post blog entries after a difficult night’s camping (the same principle behind not shopping for food on an empty stomach).
So I had been looking forward to an opportunity to pop back, which I did, in April 2009. I’ve updated the entry accordingly.
First of all, there is a monstrous range of coffees, from the usual to cinnamon latte and vanilla mocha. I had a relatively conservative “red eye” cappuccino on my first visit, and a latte on my second. The latte especially was a beautiful mug of coffee; the best I’ve tasted in the region behind Leoni.
It was Leoni’s owner, Simon Robertson, who trained the man behind Roasters, Barry Lawrenson. Barry has gone on to win the Northern Heat of the UK Barista Championships in 2008, picking up the “Best Speciality Drink” prize to boot.
I had a chat with Barry, who took the plunge in to coffee shops after his “normal” career left him a bit underwhelmed. He is passionate about coffee and about his customers. He is aiming at the “10% of people who appreciate really good coffee”, and points out that 10% is a big enough percentage to keep his business flourishing.
The philosophy is working. Barry opened a second branch (also in Scarborough) and, just a few days after my second visit, a third.
This branch (the original) is spacious, with tables downstairs, comfy sofas upstairs and seating outside.
On my first visit the barista (not Barry) was in a bit of a grump, which put a downer on things, but all other indications suggest a friendly, charming place, great for a bit of relaxation after building sandcastles.
Normally, I visit coffee shops in a posse of two. This time there were seven of us, on a day trip to the beach. Everyone enjoyed their visit and the coffee drinkers were impressed by their brews.
Like an increasing number of coffee shops in Britain, there is a quality product at the heart of Roasters, which comes highly recommended.
Scarborough: not short on chips, donkeys, quaintness and excellent coffee.
8 Aberdeen Walk
We visited on 22 June 2008.