‘I like coffee because it gives me the illusion that I might be awake’ – Lewis Black
I remember when Laneway first opened and I was invited to the launch but couldn’t make it because it was a Wednesday morning and I had a meeting to go to (quite ironic then that they were the first review of the Lightning Light Lunch (LLL) guide). But I’d always heard nothing but good things about it, particularly their coffee.
The décor inside is minimalist but bright and welcoming, it’s a bit a tardis in terms of size, not looking particularly big from the outside but goes quite far back and seats are far enough apart that you don’t feel crammed in or your encroaching on the person next to you’s conversation.
When we visited on a Thursday lunchtime just after 12pm there was a board outside advertising any coffee and sandwich for £5.50. This was a good start. Despite being what I would consider as peak lunchtime is was nicely busy. There were a few people dotted around having coffee, or working on laptops but getting a seat wasn’t a problem. We decided what we wanted from the small but perfectly formed menu of sandwiches and toasties and were served at the counter straight way.
Being a sucker for anything with basil in I went for the chicken, tomato and pesto ciabatta and Ang the falafel wrap with a flat white and a can of pop respectively. My coffee arrived almost instantly and looked beautiful, with the sandwiches arriving about 5 minutes after that (tick, tick, tick!)
The food was pretty great in all honesty, the chicken was nice big fresh chunks and the pesto wasn’t over powering. It came with crisps and salad too which is always a plus in my eyes. A moment silence is now required to show the coffee the respect it deserves. I’m by no means a coffee snob (frozen granules in the office is fine for me) but it does mean I appreciate a proper cup when I have one. It was rich, smooth and strong, which is just how I like my men incidentally. And had such a decent kick to it that when I went to the gym that night it fueled a PB on the treadmill.
We were served in such good time in fact that we had plenty of time to share a nutella brownie afterwards, for research purposes of course, which was bloody delicious (£2.50).
So the first review on the LLL, Laneway certainly got us off to a strong start and have set the bench pretty high for coffee shops to come.
Scores on the doors:
Under £10: yes
Pay by card: yes
Easily seated: yes
Served within an hour: yes
Take away available: yes