TAP No. 114
TAP is a product of something that has happened in the coffee world that I am no fan of, but fall victim to quite frequently. Its existence purely caters to a certain aesthetic that has arisen within the coffee culture. Granted, this aesthetic can be very enticing, such as a bike hung above the opening of the store that reads 'COFFEE' or sugar tins made out of old cans or a cute little menu written on a cute vintage mirror. In some coffee shops, this aesthetic can even be served right alongside good coffee. However, more often than not it is more aesthetics over coffee that win out at the end of the day. Granted, coffee shops are there to sell and therefore need to find the best waysell what they have. Also, most people don't know what good coffee is anyways and therefore it is much easier to sell a product that people don't know about to a crowd if they just have the same aesthetic as the 'good' coffee shops. I'm here to try and help you find the difference.
I went to TAP No. 114 out of convenience most of the time. I would suck it up and pay a ridiculous 2.5 pounds for espresso because it was right on my way to class (maybe a 2 minute walk from me and then 2 minute walk to class). TAP roasts their own coffee for their three different locations; No. 26 on Rathbone Place and No. 193 on Wardour Street are the other two. Their most recent espresso was a 'Jack of Spades' espresso blend of Colombian and El Salvadorian coffees, but they also had the option of their single origin espresso (which was even more silly expensive). Out of the many times that I visited TAP, I maybe had one good espresso. Their espresso in house is served alongside a cold white tea, as opposed to most people serving it with sparkling water to cleanse the palette. Personally, I found that any espresso served with a slightly flavoured tea would throw off my taste of the coffee itself. Most of my unpleasant experiences came from the uneven textures of the espresso and the resting bitch faces of the people behind the counter. I'm sure they're quite nice, really.
Recommend: Out of convenience for UCL or SOAS students!
Note: They have a nice assortment of breakfast foods and lunch foods.
Espresso Rating: 6/10
Overall Rating: 6/10
Addresses: 114 Tottenham Court Road, 26 Rathbone Place, 193 Wardour Street
Hours: 8am-7pm Mon-Fri, Sat 10am-6pm, Sun closed except No. 193 open 12pm-6pm