Imagine walking into a café that’s a little rough around the edges, but polished in all the right places.
There’s no denying that London, Ontario is a no nonsense city, still living in the shadow of its industrial past, and for decades, its coffee culture has followed suit. Who’s going to save us from this caffeine wasteland?
105 King Street (London, Ontario, Canada)
Located in downtown London, Ontario across from the coveted entertainment conglomerate, Budweiser Gardens (formally the Labatt Center), Fire Roasted is a marvelous addition to London’s Starbucks infested core. Genuine lovers of the bean unite! Started by coffee, beer, wine, and chocolate enthusiast Dave Cook in 2005, the Fire Roasted Empire has since expanded to two café locations (105 King St. & 138 Wortley Rd.), a mobile café, and an offsite roastery (900 King St. – 2nd floor of Western Fair Farmer’s Market), giving London’s coffee scene the touch of sophistication it desperately needed.
Quality of Service:
My sister and I were served by the hiptastic, Stephan. Trust me! This adjective is warranted. If his sweet demeanor and bohemian style doesn’t put a smile on your face, his extensive coffee know-how certainly will. Although newly employed at Fire Roasted, he wasn’t a stranger to the world of coffee. He and his co-worker enthusiastically described the origins, mixed genealogies, and expected flavors of each of their featured beans while serving samples of each.
Quality of Product:
Their cappuccino ($3.75) and double shot espresso ($2.75) were brewed with their delicate, multi-origin Expression Espresso, using their sleek & shiny machines: Mazzer Robur Grinder & Nuova Simonelli Aurelia ll Espresso Machine. Before you start cringing over the price, know that 90% of Fire Roasted’s products are Fair Trade certified. Yea, for being socially responsible consumers! AND their beans are locally roasted and packaged. Yea, for supporting local businesses!
Other beans “on tap”: Grand Bend Biker Blend & Brazil Santos. The former will give you the caffeine kick-in-the-butt you need, thanks to those added Robusta beans, while the latter is a much smoother, single-origin blend.
Quality of Atmosphere:
Typical café-chic décor awaits you at Fire Roasted with wooden counters, chalkboard menu, exposed brick walls, and wrought iron furnished terrace. Frequented by caffeine deficient white collared professionals and post-secondary students, there’s also room for a smattering of people watchers, day dreamers, and conversationalists. All in all, Fire Roasted has the makings of a free-WiFi wielding coffice; I just wish they had couches for that added touch of comfort.
If you’re downtown London, and need a hiptastic ((๑˃̵ᴗ˂̵)و) place to study, meet friends, or get some work done, all while getting your vital dose of the glorified bean, brewed only by experienced artisans, then, Fire Roasted is calling. I mean the only other option is Starbucks… So… Your choice!
As always, thank you for reading and joining me on this #internationalcoffeejourney
What makes our coffee different? Passion and intent. There is a belief in some quarters that foods know the emotions and intent of the person preparing it. If you truly pay attention to your product on a personal level, be there, the resulting product will taste better. We, at Fire Roasted, believe this to be true.