While many of us are still working from home, the lure of the Outside World (more specifically, the smell of coffee and freshly-baked croissants) can be impossible to resist. So if you’re craving a change of scene, a bit of company and a decent flat white, grab your MacBook and get out to support your local café*.
In this series of blogs, we’re going to share some of our favourite independent coffee shops where we work – in Tunbridge Wells, Sevenoaks, Brighton and Crawley – starting with Sevenoaks. We’d also love to know who’s in your top 5 too? Let us know on Facebook and we’ll be sure to pay them a visit.
*If you’re working from a café and using their WiFi, it’s worth checking with the owner/manager what ‘restrictions’ they might have in place, such as maximum time limit or minimum food/drink order.
BEST FOR……WATCHING THE WORLD GO BY – Malabar
81 High Street, Sevenoaks, Kent, TN13 1LE Tel: 01732 743 055
Location: Just a few doors down from MacMan, this café boasts a central location right on the High Street, with plenty of space inside and out.
Food & Drink: Start the day with coffee and a breakfast muffin, toastie, panini or savoury croissants – all made fresh on the premises every day – or treat yourself to a freshly-baked cake with a pot of Fairtrade loose-leaf tea, hot chocolate or a healthy smoothie.
BEST FOR……SUSTAINABLE/PLANT-BASED FOOD – Life on High
140 High Street, Sevenoaks, TN13 1XE
Location: Relatively new to the Sevenoaks scene, Life on High is centrally located on the High Street.
Food & Drink: Come for breakfast, brunch or lunch – the well-travelled owners are passionate about the environment and the café prides itself on serving nutritious, sustainable food, plant-based dishes (both vegan and vegetarian), carefully selected local meats, dairy and responsibly sourced fish.
BEST FOR….SUPPORTING A COFFEE CO-OPERATIVE – Otto’s
37 High Street, Sevenoaks, TN13 1JD
Location: Otto’s serves delicious food and drinks from its picture postcard building at the top end of the High Street.
Food & Drink: Grab a coffee while you work in the dedicated co-working space upstairs (we love the freshly roasted Americano) or enjoy it at home by signing up to an Otto’s coffee subscription.
What We Love: Otto’s is dedicated to being environmentally and socially responsible. Calling itself a ‘co-operative coffee roasting enterprise’, the initiative was founded by a group of friends, intent on revolutionising the industry with a dream to drive environmental change by putting ‘planet before profit’.
BEST FOR……A QUIET SPOT TO WORK FROM – Rafferty’s
54 Holly Bush Lane, Sevenoaks Kent TN13 3TL Tel: 01732 454 233
Location: Set slightly out of the town centre, family-owned Rafferty’s has a super comfy feel, easy for parking and ideal for somewhere quieter to work.
Food & Drink: The café prides itself on its homemade food, created with local and seasonal produce. Cakes are freshly baked in-house while the breakfast menu has everything from smashed avo on toasted sourdough to pancakes – and of course, a Full English.
BEST FOR….LIGHT LUNCHES AND INFORMAL MEETINGS – Basil
3-5 Bank Street, Sevenoaks, TN13 1UW Tel: 01732 496430
Location: Down a pretty, pedestrianised street with plenty of seating outside, inside and upstairs, Basil has built a solid reputation in the area and now has four wholefood cafés in Tunbridge Wells, Tonbridge & Sevenoaks, with food produced from scratch in its state-of-the-art 3,000 sq ft kitchen.
Food & Drink: Known for its delicious freshly baked cakes (the gluten-free brownies are a must), Basil’s house blended coffee beans are used in its espresso, cappuccino and latte with a rich and lasting crema.
What We Love: Basil is a great spot for informal meetings. Expect a spread of lunch foods including filo tarts and frittatas, buttery quiches and colourful, inventive salads.