CoffeeBeer >> Double Shot Buzz >> Previous Coffee Columns >> Hulley's Cafe
Coffee shops come and coffee shops go. The address "736 Ecclesall Road" has been the location of several now-defunct cafes: Duo's, Elan's, Cosy Cottage Coffee Shop, Freon, and more recently the Park Lounge Café.
On a recent muggy Sunday, on a friend's six-month-old recommendation, a group of us were looking for the Park Lounge Café. We finally gave up in our quest and decided instead to try Hulley's Café. It was only through later research that I learned Park Lane had closed and Hulley's had opened in its place.
We sat upstairs where the atmosphere is very peaceful, with plain light wood and soothing Sierra Club-style photos of mountains, lakes, sunsets, otters, and flowers. The photos reminded me of the bedroom of my late teens, which was green with one green-carpeted wall and lots of similar photos, a logical progression from my early teenage black-and-white tiger striped jungle room. So I definitely felt at home here.
Jim, Rory, and Carla all had cappuccinos which were served in very big Starbucks-style cups with chocolate sprinkles. Andrew and I had double macchiatos which were served in cappuccino cups with rather asymetrically haphazard blobs of milk foam. They weren't very pretty, but they were served with demitasse spoons which I always appreciate. And my first sip proved that looks can deceive: the coffee is excellent! It's robust, not too roasted or too hot -- just very good, very fine, and satisfyingly strong. After spending the previous day at a local pub's charity event enjoying live music and lots of beer, this was a double macchiato that got to the point and cleared my head.
We had another round of coffees which were much more attractive in appearance and equally as good. The manager apologised for serving them in the wrong cups, explaining that he was waiting for proper cups to be delivered. The coffee he uses is from Matthew Algie, a roaster based in Glasgow.
My breakfast was very nice as well. The full English and full Vegetarian are both £5.00, which is not bad for the neighbourhood. I was tempted by the roasted smoked salmon scrambled eggs on toast, but as everybody else was having full Englishes I decided to go for the full veggie. The mushrooms were excellent and my veggie sausages were decent. And instead of toast we had thick slabs of freshly baked bread with butter, and the orange juice is freshly squeezed.
All in all, Hulley's is a great place for a relaxed, good quality breakfast -- and, of course, an excellent espresso. I sincerely hope they buck the "736 Ecclesall Road" trend and stick around for awhile.
Speaking of peaceful places reminds me of a recent e-mail exchange with a workmate about brackets:HALLLLLOOOOOOOOOOOOOO....