My first encounter with % Arabica was in Hong Kong a couple of years back. I was heading for the star ferry at Tsim Sha Tsui and came across them. Despite being a small shop, the design was modern and attractive, and I immediately liked the place. After having one of their coffees, I like the place even more and easily one of the best coffee spots around town. Fast forward to today, I’m thrilled to have my favourite coffee spot coming to London and even expanding to multiple branches across the city!
% Arabica: A Coffee Passion from Kyoto
A little background about % Arabica – it’s a very popular coffee chain that started in Kyoto, founded with a strong passion for coffee. They are well-known for the outstanding quality of coffee they make and, of course, the slick minimalistic aesthetics in both their shop, equipment, and branding.
% Arabica first launched in London with a small space at Covent Garden. It’s got a bright and modern interior and features their custom Slayer coffee machines just like in any other of their shops globally. They later also opened a site in Mayfair, which got a bigger space and an airier feel, as well as a shop in Broadway Market. You can also find various merchandise available at the shop as well
The Coffees: What We Ordered
Iced Latte (£2.80)
My go-to at the Hong Kong branches is the Iced Latte – and that’s exactly what I ordered when I first hit up the London branch. The latte did not disappoint and has certainly hit the spot. It was incredibly silky and smooth to taste, with just the right intensity and sweetness. This totally momentarily brought me back home when I was sipping through this lush coffee by the harbour waiting to hop on the star ferry. It’s definitely my favourite to order at % Arabica!
Iced Spanish Latte (£3.60)
The Iced Latte will always have a special place for me but here comes a new favourite that absolutely stole my heart – the Spanish Iced Latte. The difference between a regular iced latte and a Spanish iced latte is the use of condensed milk. Spanish Iced Latte is naturally sweeter and a little richer to taste because of the condensed milk. If you enjoy a little sweet touch in your coffee, you’re going to absolutely love it too!
Matcha Latte (£3.2)
Knowing % Arabica is a Japanese brand, I thought I’d try out some of their matcha offerings as well. I tried out their matcha latte and didn’t disappoint either. You get to choose between sweetened or unsweetened matcha – I’d recommend sweetened as the matcha was quite strong & intense. The flavours were rich but well-balanced, and the drink was velvety to taste and quite a lovely non-caffeinated pick-me-up.
Kouign Amman (£2.2)
Other than coffee, % Arabica London also offers a small selection of pastries and treats including croissants and brownies. Scanning through the menu, my eyes had set on the Kouign Amman. I haven’t had that many Kouign Amman pastries so, to me, it might look a bit small compared to those I had at Dominique Ansel Bakery. Nevertheless, it was absolutely lovely. The pastry was perfectly flaky, crispy on the outside, and fluffy on the inside. The sweetness was just right and though seemingly small in size, it was actually just perfect to pair with a good cup of coffee!
It’s been clear that I’ve been a fan of % Arabica from the very beginning and will continue to be a big fan of them. They are easily my favourite coffee shop in the world and I couldn’t be more thrilled to see them thriving in London. No matter where in the world, % Arabica delivers.
% Arabica serves some of the best lattes around the world!
Nearest station: Covent Garden