It is surprisingly tricky to get a good cappuccino made with soya milk. I know it’s a pain (friends who have been barristas have told me how much of an inconvenience it can be) but for some people the non-dairy option is a necessity and a black americano just doesn’t suffice when you are paying a few pounds for a coffee. For me, unless I take my lactase enzyme tablets, anything I eat/drink based on the milk produced from a cow sends me into a sleepy stupor where I slur my words until I have the opportunity to sleep it off. Consequently, a milky coffee really confuses my body and it goes into a rollercoaster state of awake-asleep-awake-asleep. Unsurprisingly, I avoid normal milk wherever possible.
Luckily, I have recently stumbled on a lovely place that has paid some attention to understanding the difficult ways of soya milk to develop the perfect cappuccino. A recent trip for a lunchtime pick-me-up to the aptly named Small St. Espresso (they are set on Small Street) turned out to be a wonderful recommendation from a fellow soya milk drinker on Twitter. They have tried several brands before they found the option that provided the best foam, BonSoy (thank you Sarah). They are also obviously coffee enthusiasts and answered all our silly questions, such as ‘What is a Piccolo?’ (not an instrument in this case by the way – it’s essentially a small espresso-based milky coffee, gaining popularity in London where there is no time to finish a full-sized coffee).
The place is very cute – with enough seating along the wooden bench seats for about 10-12 people I would predict. The drinks menu is kept simple with a one size for all approach. Harts Bakery supply their morning pasteries, which apparently sell out in super speedy time so you’ll have to be an early bird. Toasties and cakes are on offer throughout the rest of the afternoon. They also have Crumbs magazine to keep you entertained – so you can easily while away a few hours. It’s just a shame I had to go back to work! 😉