Monday, 18 June 2012

Scooter Caffè


The other day, I discovered a gorgeous little cafe which is right up Miss Immy's street. It's the Scooter Caffè in SE1, which is so close to Waterloo station, you can skip there before you can say Chattanooga Choo Choo. Far too quirky and cool to have a website, Scooter Caffè is a real find, frequented by locals and those in the know. It used to be a scooter and moped workshop which had a couple of tables and chairs where you could enjoy a coffee. But the workshop has now relocated to Bermondsey, whilst the coffee aspect has evolved into a fully fledged cafe, whilst retaining lots of its scooter, moped and Vespa-infused charm. The staff are really friendly, the decor is fun, the cakes are awesome and there are 3 resident cats. What's not to like!


Scooter Caffè is located down the far end of Lower Marsh which is like a mini village with everything you could possibly need including a laundrette; chemist; bookies; hardware shop; Chinese takeaway; bookshop and a baker. There's also Greensmith's, a lovely deli & wine shop, as well as Trussons menswear shop which looks like it's been there since the 1970's. There's also a great little Italian and a Cuban restaurant. And not one, but two excellent vintage shops - Radio Days and What The Butler Wore. For a culture fix, The Old Vic theatre is a stone's throw away.


As you walk in the front door of Scooter Caffè, you're hit by an aroma of freshly ground coffee, as the bright red Gaggia coffee machine gurgles away knocking out plentiful cappuccinos, espressos and other caffeine concoctions. Nostalgic music plays in the background as you find a comfy pew at one of the mismatched tables and chairs and absorb the quirky surroundings. The walls are adorned with numerous vintage signs, mirrors, pictures and clocks, whilst dishevelled bookshelves creak with random objets d'art, books and other odds & ends. There's a pretty outdoor area where you can sit amongst the trees and terracotta plant pots in the sunshine. Or disappear downstairs for a more dark, cosy atmosphere better suited for evenings and late night clandestine rendezvous.


All kinds of people go to Scooter Caffè whether they're creative types discussing work over a beer; friends gossiping over a glass of wine; lovers sharing one cake (two forks), or loners escaping with a good book and a double chocamochalattecino. As well as serving splendid tea and coffee, there's a well stocked bar, but they don't actually serve food - the amazing thing being that you can bring your own, on the basis that you're polite enough to take your rubbish away with you, which is more than fair enough. But if it's cakes you're after, then I defy you not to give in to a slice of magnificent red velvet cheesecake or a homemade custard tart. To add to the nostalgia vibe, they sell proper Coca Cola in glass bottles, as well as good old fashioned Tunnock's teacakes with the gooey marshmallow middle.


I can see that Scooter Caffè is going to become a firm favourite of mine, a great place to take friends for tea or wine. Or perhaps settle in for an afternoon where tea time merges into wine time... It's the kind of place which needs to be kept a secret, so make sure you only share it with people you really like! Oh and they don't fix scooters any more.
 
 
Scooter Caffè
132 Lower Marsh
SE1 7AE
020 7620 1421
(2 mins from Waterloo station)
Opens: 8.30am weekdays and 10am Sat/Sun
Closes: 11pm Mon - Thur & Sun and 1am on Fri/Sat

3 comments:

james john said...

wow, it is really amazing to see scooter cafe, i have header about various cafe like net cafe and other cafe but i'm hearing first time about scooter cafe. It is unbelievable that workshop has been transferred but still cafe is there.

Kerridwen said...

Very nice! I do love that part of Waterloo, it has such character. :)

Backdrifter said...

Completely agree about Scooters, and also about Lower Marsh. I could happily spend all day there. At Scooters, I recommend the hot chocolate on a cold day, proper thick rich essence of chocolate you have to pretty much eat rather than drink.

I didn't know there'd been three cats, I certainly met two, but sadly one of them - Stan - is no longer with us. But Bob is alive and well as of the time of this post, so when you go to Scooters, seek out Bob and give her (for Bob is a girl) a stroke and a scratch on the head. She'll probably be dozing on a chair, but say hello anyway.

On weekdays, Lower Marsh has food stalls that do very good stuff in a range of cuisines.

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