CoffeeBeer >> Double Shot Buzz >> Previous Coffee Columns >> Lucky Fox

Back Buzz - February 15, 2014

pumping heartLucky Fox, 72 Division Street, Sheffield, South Yorkshire

Walking down Division Street recently I spotted a cafe I hadn't noticed before. The name definitely appealed to me, so I thought I might stop in some time for a visit. Browsing the window menu I was attracted by the fact that they feature poached eggs in their breakfast dishes and also craft American beers. But it was the boast that they make the best coffee in Sheffield that definitely demanded I give it a try.

So last week I stopped into the Lucky Fox for a coffee. The place was full of coffee drinkers and diners, and I appeared to be the oldest customer by probably centuries. The cafe has a distinctly hipster American feel to it, with old blues playing in the background. The floors are reclaimed wood, and the walls are decorated with drawings and paintings featuring a New York City skyline and a framed Mets jersey -- although the painting of a Henderson's Relish bottle jetted me right back home to Sheffield, and I didn't even feel jetlagged. I sat at one of the tall tables on a disproportionately taller stool, so that I ended up towering over my macchiato like a caffeine-deprived giant. For all I could tell from my lofty altitude above the distant cup, it could have been a giant latte way down there instead of a little macchiato. I almost needed a telescope.

But it was a double macchiato, served with a tiny heart etched in the foam and accompanied by a pretzel. The coffee was very robust like I prefer it, but the shots could have been a tad stronger. Still it wasn't bad at all. The day was moist and foggy and I was a bit stressed, so it helped dissolve the tension into a warm coolness.

The cafe is apparently inspired by eateries in Brooklyn, New York. There is definitely an American bent to the menu, with chicken and buttermilk biscuits (credited to a restaurant in Williamsburg, Brooklyn), homemade beef jerky, softshell crab, Reuben and grilled cheese sandwiches, and the Fat Elvis, a disgusting sounding American extravaganza of fried chicken, cheese, bacon, slaw, and fries in a sandwich. It brought to mind an over-the-top breakfast pie that I dreamed up for my novel. They've even featured chicken and waffles, a uniquely American phenomenon. They offer American bottled beers from Anchor, Sierra Nevada, Flying Dog, and of course Brooklyn breweries, and for dessert there are American-style pies including apple, sour cherry, and pecan bourbon. The menu seems to feature pickles with the sandwiches, which made me wonder if they could be decent crunchy kosher dills. After all, there are aspects of American food I do miss, especially authentic Mexican food, decent bagels, and kosher dills.

According to the Lucky Fox's Facebook page their motto is "Arrive hungry, leave drunk." As the place is open every day from breakfast to late, this would be easily achievable.

There's one thing that confuses me, though. Aside from an image of a fox on the front door, there seems to be no other mention of foxes, lucky or not, in the cafe. And foxes don't really suggest Brooklyn, except for perhaps the lingerie shop in Williamsburg or the TV network. So I am wondering how it got its name.

Speaking of clever animals reminds me of a recent Facebook posting started when one of my more clever household fixtures lunged out and brutally attacked me:

I don't know what the cellar door has against me -- it just gave me a black eye. Have I ever said anything bad about cellar doors? I've seen the way you look at it behind closed doors! Only when it acts up. Does the NHS offer cellar door counselling? Be careful with tables too... they are equally as evil and conniving. I have warned humanity before! Inanimate objects will rise against you! Beware! BEWARE! I regularly get attacked by door handles -- not in the eye, though. You need to try harder, Olivia. We don't have to worry about them here in Texas: no cellars! But we live "in the woods" and tree branches do tend to snag on you and the underbrush catches your feet causing you to trip. But mostly I trip on my dogs; they tend not to anticipate what direction you are going to go. (Besides all of these excuses the truth is I am just a klutz!) My door handles usually punch me in the nipple, but I guess I'm a short-arse. It was the flat of the door that lunged out and viciously attacked me. I guess now I have to beware of the door handles as well -- especially if there are any dogs around. Didn't you once get a bad bite from a blender? Yes, blended off the top of my middle finger. Fortunately I don't have a blender at the moment -- but I'm going to start worrying about the food processor.