Tag Archives: Sheffield

Somewhere Else Coffeehouse & Bakery – The North’s Coffee Community, pt X

My hunt for independent coffee haunts has once again taken me to Sheffield with Somewhere Else Coffee. This recently opened coffee establishment is family owned and run by Caroline and Katie Scott, a mother and daughter duo who originally hail from Rotherham. Having once been in the business of managing a boatyard building barges, it’s certainly a bit of a departure to making an espresso, but this dream of opening their own coffee shop was just too great.

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Choosing the city of Sheffield for its home, they appreciated what the place had to offer in terms of history and character. After a long search to find the perfect space for the shop, they saw completely by chance an empty betting shop that had been covered up for years on Eccleshall Road. Being able to see passed all the work that it would need, they fell in love with the space, in particular the front window. For the interior they used inspiration that harks to the past, with recycled and reclaimed materials found every now and again in there quirky designed interior.

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They wanted to use a local roastery for the coffee and happen to use Leeds based roaster North Star!! These guys are certainly getting around, and no wonder with their superb coffee, you’ll be able to find North Star’s Dark Arches for their house coffee. This is something they are very proud of at Somewhere Else, as they are the first to sell coffee from North Star in these parts.  Somewhere Else isn’t just about coffee though, tea also plays an important part on their beverage list too; using Sheffield based Birdhouse.

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Cakes are all homemade by Caroline’s own fair hands, popular they are too; in particular their blueberry, strawberry and almond cake which goes down a storm! With many of them catering for a range of dietary requirements, whether they be gluten intolerant, dairy or vegan there’ll be something delicious for you!

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I really liked the space they’ve created, having used lots of reclaimed materials to produce a shop that’s light, bright and mixed with quirky touches every now and again. Upstairs there’s a more cosy snug and a studio room that showcases work from local artists and University students. In keeping with one of their main priorities of being a part of the local community, they help to raise money for Sheffield Children’s Hospital.

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Keeping the shop in the family is very important to these guys and their aim is for it to grow steadily, building a firm base on Eccleshall Road and doing a good job of it. In the future they’d like to sell coffee beans, increase their repertoire using different brewing techniques such as Aeropress, and possibly hosting coffee cupping events.

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If you’re ever in Sheffield and fancy coffee from fantastic local roaster North Star, served in relaxed surroundings by some lovely people, why not try Somewhere Else Coffee?

Somewhere Else Coffee
965 Ecclesall Road
Sheffield
S11 8TN
http://www.somewhereelsecoffee.com/#/
http://www.northstarroast.com
https://www.facebook.com/BirdhouseTeaCompany

Tamper: Sellers Wheel – The North’s Coffee Community pt IX, Sheffield

I’m back on the trail hunting out the best independent, artisan coffee purveyors for my series on The North’s Coffee Community, this time in Sheffield with Tamper: Sellers Wheel. Located on Arundel Street near Sheffield Hallam University, Sellers Wheel was opened in August 2013 by Tamper owner Jonathan Perry and Ben Smith of The Hop Box.

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The original Tamper: Westfield Terrace is a place for coffee enthusiasts, with an intimate feel between barista and coffee drinker, while Sellers Wheel has a slightly different vibe. It’s a cafe with a greater emphasis on serving wonderful coffee, but also good food and thoughtfully selected craft beers/ales, which is where Ben’s expertise comes into play.  They’d like Sellers Wheel to be more like a brewery cafe, similar to what you may find in Jonathan’s previous home New Zealand.

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This Grade II listed building was originally a silversmiths workshop based around a courtyard. The place has been stripped back, exposing the original brickwork and comes with a relaxed, semi-industrial feel.

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On entrance into Sellers Wheel I instantly got the feeling that even though this place has good square footage, with a large dining area, the coffee is still very much a big deal here, with their grinders and La Marzocca machine taking centre stage on the counter. Serving coffee to take out and sit-in, they have a concise menu of variations on a theme of espresso, all expertly made. For those wanting something a little cleaner they offer pour overs and Aeropress. There’s even a beautiful cold-brew drip tower on show; slowly dripping feeding away for hours on end (8 hours I think), resulting in a clean beverage that possesses low acidity and is well-balanced – an indication that these guys are serious about their coffee.

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Their single origin coffee of choice comes from London based roasters Ozone. This paired with their La Marzocca machine works well with their beans producing a great shot of espresso.

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I loved the look of the stripped back main cafe area, its rustic wooden benches and seating reminding me of old school chairs; it really suited the space and just seemed to fit.

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To accompany the coffee are an enticing array of baked goods which come from a variety of different sources, such as Wellbeck Bakehouse from Worksop, Sheffield based #brownies and their very own kitchen bakes the carrot cake and Anzac biscuits.

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Sellers Wheel with its extra space is well equipped to host events; such as their monthly supper club – Tamper Late, the last one celebrated Yorkshire produce from local suppliers. It’s also allowed them to demonstrate their culinary talents with food and coffee matching, using different brewing techniques to showcase their favourite single origin coffee in the best way.  Tamper Wind down – allows the perfect opportunity to chill out after work with wine, craft beer and cocktails every Friday. Lastly, Tamper Workshoptheir monthly coffee workshop where they hold cupping sessions and try out new coffees.

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In addition to their main dining room they are fortunate to have what they call the Board Room, available for hire, whether it be for meetings or larger groups who need a bit of space for relaxing, catching up with lunch/dinner from their main menu.

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I couldn’t visit without trying out their menu, they have an extensive breakfast/brunch menu ranging in price from £3.50 – £9. Both being fans of Eggs Benedict, I added extra smoked salmon to mine, whilst the other half went for bacon. I found the service friendly and warm, there’s a lovely relaxed feel to the space and I’d find it very easy to spend a lot of time in there. If only Sellers Wheel was in Leeds!!

Even though the place had really filled up quite quickly, service from the kitchen was pretty lively and brisk, fantastic as we were both pretty ravenous. I must say that when the plates arrived they looked very pretty indeed, but it’s not all about the aesthetics is it?!

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My dish had the flavours to match its good looks and is one of the best Eggs Benedict’s I’ve had in a while! Perfectly, and I mean perfectly poached eggs, with gloriously runny, golden yolks accompanying the hollandaise to sauce the dish. The hollandaise was deliciously smooth, but not too rich and clawing as it can be sometimes. The addition of a hash brown was a pleasant surprise, lovely and crisp adding extra texture and flavour. Plenty of metallic spinach and a vibrant red pepper sauce made it a fantastic mid-morning meal. I say ‘meal’ because it was a decent size.

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At £8.50, possibly a bit more pricey than your bog standard Eggs Benedict, but this wasn’t bog-standard, ours had additional extras – spinach, pepper sauce, hash brown, micro herbs and salmon making it well worth the price. Zero complaints on the opposite side of the table, during my usual need to take tonnes of photos before eating, (it’s a wonder that I actually eat), he’d already wolfed down nearly half of his, especially commenting on the crisp, salty bacon in a big way! A great way to set yourself up for the day ahead! 

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A lovely cafe which I think is a bit of an all-rounder, somewhere that has great coffee, food, drinks, is pleasing on the eye and an ideal place to spend time any time of the day – breakfast, brunch, lunch, tea and dinner! In the future Tamper may start holding training courses for barista, possibly masterclasses, whatever avenue they choose to follow I’m sure it’ll match the high standard they’ve already set themselves!

Do you know of any fantastic independent coffee establishments that I’ve not visited yet in the area? I’d love to know if you have any recommendations!

Tamper Sellers Wheel
Arundel St
Sheffield
South Yorkshire
S1 2N
0114 2757970
http://tampercoffee.co.uk

Upshot Espresso, Sheffield – The North’s Coffee Community, pt VII

My latest review has brought me to Sheffield for the first time on my indie coffee exploration, and I must admit I’m still really enjoying the ride and venturing outside of Leeds! Upshot Espresso came onto my coffee radar during North Star’s Latte Art Throw Down, when one of their baristas competed in the event.

Originally from Doncaster, Upshot Espresso started life when Sam and his Dad opened the place 2 years ago. Found on busy Glossop Road, near the Royal Hallamshire Hospital and Sheffield University, their main custom comes from both of these establishments.

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It’s a light, relaxed space and with an inviting low level counter showing off their prized EK-43 grinder, the creme de la creme of grinders and a yummy selection of baked goods, either produced by an artisan baker in Penistone or by their resident baker Lauren. With a semi-rustic feel from reclaimed wood pine floor boards for counter tops and old army bridge supports for the window table, I chatted to Sam who is the Head Barista/owner of the shop at said window, which for me was the best seat in the house!

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Like some other great coffee establishments a low coffee counter lends itself well to interaction and building relationships with customers. They can show off different brewing methods, such as V60 and Aeropress, and a nice bit of latte art. Yeah, I know that doesn’t mean the coffee’s good, but I personally can’t get enough of it!

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In this case the coffee’s great, they have two different espressos on at a time, and three filters, swearing by artisan roasters like Square Mile and Workshop. They regularly host guest coffees too, just to mix it up a little bit and keep it interesting. Provenance and traceability plays an important part in their choices of roasters and coffee, so using artisan roasters is at the top of Upshot’s priorities. 

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At the time I visited there was Square Mile’s Red Brick Seasonal Espresso with 60% La Serrania from Columbia and 40% Santa Ana from Brazil giving  brownie sweetness, vanilla aromas and dried fruit finish. Also on the books was James Gourmet‘s Sulawesi Tana Toraja AA Espresso with its rich, silky body, hint of asparagus, sweetness, fruit and floral notes.

On filter they had an Ethiopian Doyo from local artisan roasters Foundry and Columbian filters Finca El Agrado and Finca La Esmerelda from Workshop.

They are also the purveyor of fine teas using a nice selection from the Canton Tea Co, and are happy to talk tea as much as they are to talk coffee!

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Sam and barista Fran were both friendly, immediately approachable and informative, without feeling the need to dish out every single bit of information on the coffee. They have a great relationship and rapport with their regular customers, which was seen first hand as they joked about with one of them while I was there.

Collaboration with other good indies in Sheffield is important to them, just last week during UK Coffee Week, Upshot hosted a cupping event where local indie Tamper got stuck in too. Sam has also been a guest barista with the team at Bean & Bud in Harrogate. In the future they’d like to host more cupping events and possibly run evening classes such as latte art. 

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On the food side, at the moment they have a small menu which they are in the process of expanding in the near future. One of the key things is that everything they do matches the standard of the coffee they serve to customers.

During my afternoon I had a much needed piccolo using Square Mile and  a slice of the Apple Streusel tart which was scrumptious! 

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The only reason I tend to come into Sheffield is to visit my best mate, but at least I know where I can get a great coffee and cake fix, a spot of banter in a relaxed environment from a fantastic independent.

I’m looking forward to see what else Sheffield has to offer in terms of artisan independents now!!

Upshot Espresso
355 Glossop Rd
Sheffield
S10 2HP
0114 278 0333
http://www.upshotespresso.co.uk
@UpshotEspresso

Smoke Barbecue Grand Opening, Sheffield

Only since starting the blog has Sheffield come onto my radar as somewhere to go out for a decent feed. Even though my best mate lives there, I didn’t really know much about their food scene until I started reading other bloggers reviews. So when I was invited to visit a new restaurant called Smoke Barbecue in Sheffield city centre, I was quite excited. The owner Sean Gregory was so inspired after watching Man v Food, he hopped on a plane to Texas and hasn’t looked back since, opening Smoke Barbecue in December 2013. They say they specialise in authentic BBQ pit meats using a unique smoke for cooking. 

From what I’d researched, Sheffield has been waiting a long time for a restaurant like this and well here it is in all its glory. Smoke Barbecue is found beneath the striking, but aptly named ‘Cheesegrater’ car park on Charles Street in the heart of Sheffield city centre. I was a little worried on the way there that I’d have trouble finding the place, but luckily the old sat nav did the trick! We stepped out of the car park to find the restaurant with its signage showing us the way. Tempting smells wafted over, giving us a hit of smokiness which immediately caught us in our stride and drew us in.

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Smoke Barbecue initially opened its doors in December with a soft launch, with the aim of gradually honing their craft over the last month or so. I was intrigued by this venture as living in Leeds, the last year or so has seen a major increase in the American barbecue scene, especially with the likes of Reds True Barbecue amongst others making such an massive impact.

On entering the building we found it to be a pretty sizeable space, there’s an open plan industrial/warehouse feel with metal ducting, bare concrete and exposed brick walls on show. There was a strange mix of furniture, with some diners eating at proper dining tables, while others were sat at tables made out of pretend pallets. I’m all for being a little quirky, but I found it a little bit odd.

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We were greeted by a lovely lady who seated us at a booth. It did take a number of minutes for us to get served though, and as the restaurant had been informed that one of us was gluten intolerant, our server seemed to have no idea what this was, when I mentioned it!! This is where inconsistencies started to show up, for example I could see diners being given popcorn while they looked at their menus, but neither we, or some others tables received any.

On perusal of their menu it’s definitely for the carnivore, very protein heavy with only a small selection of options for non-meat eaters.

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We were told by our server we’d be given a Smoke Sharer Plate to sample between us, which costs £30. Included in the plate were beef brisket, pulled pork, turkey leg, links sausage, baby back ribs, chips and a side of our choice, I also selected the smokey pit beans to accompany this feast. All sounded great on paper, if not a little meat heavy. We also ordered two glasses of wine which arrived strangely in glass tumblers, is this what they do in Texas?

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The food did take a little while to arrive, and on first glance I think I was a little scared by the massive turkey leg so we decided to leave it till last. The food was also served warm, part from the sides which was disappointing. 

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From this sample there were definitely positive and negatives. In terms of the meat the best bit on our plate was the brisket, which had a lovely smokey flavour and was well cooked leaving it juicy and moist. It worked well with the accompanying sauce. The Texas link sausages were meaty and had a nice smokey flavour to them, nicely charred from the grill. The sides were excellent! Our chips were great – a good size, crisp and fluffy, the smokey pit beans were exactly that, they had an amazing smokey sauce, very delicious. I’d love those beans on a big slice of toast. These were the best bits.

The pulled pork was a real disappointment and it didn’t really do it for me. The meat itself was quite bland compared to pulled pork I’ve had from other places. The turkey leg was something I’d would never normally choose, as I’m not a fan anyway, but we both found it dry and sadly lacking flavour. The baby back ribs were small in size as you’d expect and even though the sticky sauce that had been brushed on them was nice, the ribs themselves were just ok.

In terms of service we were seated so we could see the bar as well as the kitchen, after a month of opening I felt the service was friendly but could be a more efficient. There were times when sharer plates were ready on the pass at the same time, but there was no one to take them. The staff did seem happy to get receive feedback and were very pleasant during the evening though. Service is a bug bear with me, but as Smoke Barbecue is still in its infancy I’m sure the team will endeavour to iron out these niggles. 

Their slogan is ‘Put the fork down, it’s time to get dirty!’ which we happily did, but then when wiping your hands after eating lots of food covered in sauce, a napkin doesn’t really do the trick sufficiently. A supply of moist hand wipes to clean up the mess would have been ideal. 

If I’m completely honest I would say that the food here is definitely a work in progress, more consistency in quality of flavour is required. This is where the phrase ‘quality not quantity’ rings true, more thought and attention to detail to get the meat really juicy, moist and full of flavour across the whole menu is needed here. More choice is needed too, especially for non-meat eaters.

Food: Carnivore friendly, food hit and miss, more consistency needed in terms of flavour and temperature!! Lacks choice for non-meat eater.

Service: Friendly but need to improve efficiency and consistency.

Atmosphere: It was a busy evening so the place did have a buzz about it.

Value for money: We were invited, so our meal was complimentary,  but we felt the plate was quite expensive for the quality of the food.

Smoke Barbecue

1 St Pauls Place

Arundel Gate

Sheffield

S1 2PN

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