Chipping Campden, a quintessential and genteel Cotswold village amid bucolic splendour, is definitely worth a visit. Explore its picturesque streets and discover enchanting spaces, impressive mansions, refined restaurants and fine boutique hotels, all behind a rustic Cotswold stone facade. Should you require refreshments, the Campden Coffee Co. will provide a charming, rustic, and intimate environment where you can relax and enjoy some decent beverages, tasty and imaginative cakes and savoury food snacks. What I find delightful is that at the Campden Coffee Co. you can never forget you are in the Cotswolds – the stone walls, the unvarnished wood furniture, the cottage garden views from the windows – are all consistent with the local environment.
The cakes are innovative – try the red wine and fig cake, so flavoursome and redolent of the region’s Roman connections, that you could almost imagine it being served in one of the triclinia of the roman villas that dotted the Cotswolds a couple of millennia ago. The paninis and sandwiches are tasty and made with local ingredients and the atmosphere is one of village conviviality. Light and bright with friendly service, the coffee shop is situated in the Old Silk Mill – also home to the Gallery at the Guild – a cooperative of artists and craftspeople exhibiting their work in the historic home of the Guild of Handicraft. You can delight your senses for a while and browse through works of pottery, painting, jewellery and more.
The coffee is their own brand and when you look at the beans in the grinder they are a tantalising dark brown. Dark roast coffee is not my personal favourite, but this is still a coffee that is a cut above your average Costa or Starbucks. A guest roast might be a nice addition, perhaps. The hot chocolate received approval from the youngest in our party, doubtless won over by the calorific addition of cream and marshmallows, but still, who would blame her. A nice touch, and one that I always take time to appreciate, is the bottle of water, complete with glasses for you to help yourself to. There are lovely soft drinks as well: two – yes, two – variants of Elderflower Pressé, and the Folkington’s juices are spot on, and cloudy as ever!
This may sound like a place for the sophisticates, but it really is somewhere for the whole family, kids and all. There is a lightness to the place, and the presence of some broad games on the shelves, definitely makes Campden Coffee Co. a place to take the whole family. Our junior reviewer said it was nice, and the cakes were “very interesting”. While we did not get to sample the hot food, we will be sure to head back there for lunch some time this summer. For now, if you’re there, pay it a visit, and see what you think.