As I have written about on chickenmonkeydog.com, I travel about London for work, heading to client meetings and the like. Recently, I wanted to check out one of those pubs that now open early to serve coffees and teas, trying to boost profits by expanding their offerings.
Exiting the Green Park Tube station, I climbed into the sunlight on a brisk spring morning a few months back. As I had about three hours before my lunch meeting, I decided to give Henry’s Bar + Café a try. Pushing through the doors to see the Illy coffee sign behind the bar raised my hopes and expectations.
Unlike the Starbucks or Costa Café, Henry’s was pretty empty. Still, the chap behind the bar was friendly and pleasant. I ordered a cappuccino and asked if I could sit anywhere. ‘Yep, please do. I’ll bring your coffee over,‘ was the reply. Hmmm … table service? I hadn’t expected that. I chose a big table (for six), unpacked my computer, plugged in headphones, mouse and dongle and began to work. A few moments later the bartender brought over a lovely, big, hot mug of frothy cappuccino. (Not sure if that’s the right description for the fellow … I was at a pub, after all. Barista maybe?) I worked for two or three hours, enjoying a pint of Coke at some point. Slowly the place filled up, but the staff continued to provide a quality table service. I was really pleased.
As I packed up for my lunch meeting, I asked for the bill. When it arrived, I smiled. £4.50. £4.50!? For a cappuccino and a pint of soda and a big empty table to work at for hours? Try getting that at Starbucks!
Concerned that it might just have been a lucky day for Henry’s, I popped in there again on Thursday of this week. Again, same friendly staff, same top quality coffee and same great work environment. I am sold. Call me a Henry’s regular.