I think I may have found one of London’s most cheerful cafes.
I spotted Vanilla Black Coffee & Books on Instagram and knew instantly that I had to visit. Whilst yellow isn’t my favourite colour, it has got to be the happiest colour in the rainbow and it never fails to make me smile. How could I resist a cafe with a yellow espresso machine and matching yellow walls? So I made it my mission to head to Kennington before we moved out of Colliers Wood for good.
I had a really restless night’s sleep on Saturday night after being woken up by family checking that James and I were safe and sound following the horrific attacks on London Bridge. So I decided I might as well just get up early and head out for coffee and a walk in the sunshine, hopeful for a bit of a pick me up on a sunny but sombre day for London.
Vanilla Black is about a 10 minute walk from Kennington tube station and somewhere I haven’t visited for a while. I forgot that there are some lovely homes there and promptly got distracted on the way. Eventually I spotted a colourful row of shops and my coffee destination.
Neither my photos nor those over on Instagram give this cafe justice for how big, bright and breezy it is.
I wasn’t in the market for food as we had quite a bit at home but you can grab pastries and cakes and I think there’s a whole brunch menu on offer. Instead I ordered a coffee and took a seat on the stools by the window.
You might have noticed from the name and these photos that there’s more to this cafe than coffee and cake. The book shelves to the right of the cafe (on entering) are full of books to buy (all non-fiction I think) and to the left you’ll find children’s books and toys. There’s even a corner with a selection of stationary.
I don’t think you can peruse whilst you drink coffee or eat, but it’s an ideal place to grab a gift or two and even some inspiration for yourself.
My coffee arrived quickly (they serve Allpress) and I enjoyed it slowly whilst basking in the sunlight, watching the world go by.
The roads felt eerily quiet that morning.
If you want direct sunlight, there’s a lovely courtyard out back where they have a collection of tables for customers to enjoy. It could easily make for an ideal summer breakfast or brunch spot.
But I was quite content on my seat indoors, until I had drained my cup.
And decided I should head back out into the world.
Vanilla Black is certainly somewhere to go and lift your spirits and enjoy the sunshine. You can find it for yourself here.