Top 6(!): Coffee
Because nothing beats a damn fine cup of coffee.
Since we first wrote our top 3 Sheffield coffee guide, the city centre really has started to spoil us for choice when it comes to long blacks and flat whites. So we're breaking our own rules, just this once, to take the number up to 6, embracing favourite coffee houses both relatively old and new.
We must confess, we're BIG tea fans at OFP. A few years ago, however, our heads were turned. It started with Bragazzi’s. The aroma emanating from our friend's espresso was impossible to ignore, and drinking English Breakfast feels a bit wrong in an Italian cafe. When in Rome and all that. Bragazzi’s is such a great cafe: delicious panini and cakes, summer gelato and coffees expertly made from their own unique blend, plus the best decor in Sheffield. It's in a great part of town too, choc-a-bloc with antique shops: Vintedge, the Antiques Emporium and Honeysuckle at Home are nearby and, after a rummage, there's no better place to sit down with a coffee and admire your purchases.
220-226 Abbeydale Road, S7 1FL
Our tea consumption decreased further with the opening of Tamper. The small but perfectly formed space at Westfield Terrace is full of charm and the heady smells of freshly roasted gourmet coffees. At the Sellers Wheel site, you've the added option of eating a delicious meal with your coffee.
Jonathan, the owner, is a trained barista from New Zealand, where he spent four years working with the finest coffee bean roasters. Lucky for us he’s brought his knowledge and passion for the bean to our fair city. Offering a different coffee every week, freshly baked cakes and super friendly service, Tamper is a breath of fresh (well, coffee-tinged) air in Sheffield city centre.
Tamper: Westfield Terrace, S1 4GH
Tamper: Sellers Wheel, 149 Arundel Street, S1 2NU
If your translation skills aren’t that good and you haven’t guessed already, the Motore folk run their mobile coffee stall from the back of a motor vehicle: a beautifully restored Piaggo Ape van, to be precise. They have a real passion for coffee and keep it local by sourcing their own blends from Sheffield master coffee roaster Pollards.
Motore can be found parked up on Howard Street in all weathers, and conveniently it’s right on the pathway into (or out of) Sheffield railway station – so there’s no excuse for having a bad brew on the train or on your way to work. We opt for their perfect flat white and one of their unpronounceable, but delicious, Sicilian pastries.
More recently, the Motore team have also opened up a sit-down cafe in the lovely Union St.
Howard Street, S1
18-20 Union Street, S1 2JR
Steam Yard is a slice of Americana right in the centre of Sheffield. Books on mid-century Hollywood fashion and New York coffee shops line the shelves, surrounding laid-back staff who’ll serve you a "Steve McQueen" – that’s a coffee and a doughnut, but let’s be clear: not just any coffee and doughnut. Steam Yard's house blend is from Square Mile Coffee Roasters, while guest blends come from other of the UK’s finest roasters. The doughnuts, meanwhile, come from The Depot bakery, and would easily pass the Homer Simpson taste test.
Together with Tamper on Westfield Terrace and, more recently, Lucky Fox on the main road, it forms a neat city-centre triangle of tasty coffee and tempting treats.
Aberdeen Court, 95-97 Division Street, S1 4GE
They're an earnest bunch, the Upshot baristas. As well as offering a choice of house and guest blends in the standard espresso/cappuccino/latte formation, they're also dab hands at a variety of hand brewing processes. Their guest espressos come served with a printed snippet of info about its flavours, they host regular latte art throwdowns, and you'll often spot an issue of Caffeine magazine on the counter. Super-serious about coffee they may be, but Upshot is far from snooty: they're a friendly lot who just seem keen to share the caffeinated love.
Close to the uni, it's popular with studious sorts during the week. It serves a wonderful brunch, too.
355 Glossop Road, S10 2HP
Decked out with wood panelling and what look like old workbenches, Marmadukes has something of a shed-like feel to it – a fancy shed, that is.
Its coffee, sourced from the Workshop in Clerkenwell, is a real treat, as are its massive slices of cake – and, being so close to The Crucible, it's ideal for a pre-matinee indulgence. Always busy indoors, we've often resorted to sitting outside on the windiest of days, just to get a taste of their red velvet cake. So we were pretty thankful to see that the cafe recently opened an extra room upstairs.
22 Norfolk Row, S1 2PA
Shout-out to all the other cafes across Sheffield featured on our site, too.