After visiting so many coffee shops thought it would be cool to share some of the places I’ve had my double espresso shots in! Check out more Coffee Sessions Here.
Ahhh Kyiv! How you have surprised me. Admittedly the expectation was low, which is unusual for me as I am the eternal optimist. The taxi ride from the airport to my hotel didn’t exactly raise them either after the stoic, silent, built like a tank driver nearly broke my arm off shaking my hand upon greeting me in the arrivals hall. The view was dreary, plentiful of depressing high rise apartment blocks. However, suddenly spotting huge art murals gracing the bare walls certainly piqued my interest. Apparently Kyiv has the largest quantity of art murals in Europe. Check this guide out, when I go back I will certainly be exploring that in more detail.
Arriving to my hotel during the middle of the day and not close to the city, my usual doctrine was initiated. Smile at the receptionist, inspect the room, dump my bags, text home to let people know I’m alive, have a leak, wash up, then finally pull up google maps for the nearest coffee shop I could chill out in for an hour or so waiting for my colleagues to arrive.
There were loads that popped up on my screen, most though funnily enough, were small cute coffee carts and cafes. By the way a local guide told me that actually the coffee is more often than not better than the numerous cafes in the city. Scrolling around the map closest to my current location one place made me rise my left eyebrow, Pablo Espresso Bar. The name alone was worth the visit!
Walking towards the place cutting across side streets, looking around, watching the locals go about their daily lives, I suddenly became comfortable. Couldn’t put my finger on why exactly, probably because I could just see, despite all the shit that has happened to this country, these people are going about their lives working hard and making it happen. Truly an ethos close to my heart. Or maybe because the female to male ratio is 8 to 1. Eight to One. Repeating the same in words I know, but as well as it needs to be repeated, it’s also a local legal law here to represent numbers in words (fiscally). Welcome to my world.
Any case I have digressed wildly, and here we are at this local coffee place. As soon as I saw the art on the wall, I knew this was my kind of place.
The entrance to side leads you down a set of stairs to the basement of the building and a chic, ambient, industrial chill out cafe bar awaits you. Walking towards the the bar looking around I gently smiled imagining how this place would be when full of people drinking and smoking shisha. Yes, shisha. Much to my surprise the city is in love with smoking the hookah. The extremely cute barista spoke only a little english but we managed to get by when I ordered my cappuccino. There appeared to be a little confusion as she started to make it in a take away cup, but I didn’t stop her. I glanced around the bar and noticed DJ decks, and decided I need to come back to this place in the evening one time. Even though it was to go, I sat down with my drink at one of the tables, not realising that the seats were deceptively lower than I imagined. Not the perfect height for me to work on the laptop, but don’t think that was the intention of the visiting clientele here in any case. The coffee itself, the barista was nice enough to even put some latte art on the drink considering it was in a take out cup. Extra bonus points for that! Sipping away, the cappuccino was lovely and managed to get a bit of work done, so i’m not totally full of bullshit ahead of my 3 day meeting.
Time for a wee wee interlude. You may or may not know I have toilet decor fascination. Absolute adore it when an establishment takes pride in adding a little bit of style into their restrooms. Here was no exception. Thankfully it was an single unisex restroom so I could pull out the camera and take a few shots without the fear of someone walking in wondering what the hell kind of pervertedness i’m doing.
Upon relieving myself decided to have my usual double espresso to really check out the taste of the coffee, and boy am I glad I did. It tasted lovely, smooth and slightly sweet, just how I like it. Lovely way to end my short visit there.
I was recommended another coffee place which I didn’t have time to check out, but i’ll be back to Kyiv a couple more times, so its on my hit list. Check back here when I will undoubtably write about it.
After saying goodbye, I started to walk back to my hotel as I needed a power nap. I know this is confusing after consuming a caffeine hit, but what can I say I’m weird like that or that I’ve developed a caffeine intolerance which is not healthy I guess. Either way I know it’s not right. On my return I decided to go the long way and walk along the main road, which was basically like a car park now with the rush hour traffic. Near the metro station there was an awesome hustle of carts, stalls of fresh veg, restaurants and a cute little coffee shop that caught my eye; London Coffee. I couldn’t resist, it was tasty and if I was a local living there would definitely be the regular pick me up before hitting the metro.
If you know any cool coffee places in Kyiv I need to check out please let me know! As always, Peace & Love.
Check out more Coffee Sessions Here.