In a city saturated by mainstream coffee outlets (and let’s face it, that’s hardly an affliction we shoulder alone), how do you go about establishing a niche when the big boys have the market sewn up?

If you haven’t discovered it already, SevenStreets would like to point you in the direction of a coffee stop that’s found the answer…

bold street coffeeBold Street Coffee, an independent rising from the site of the Liverpool mini-chain, Coffee Union, opened in the summer. In the space of a season, it’s established itself as our coffee house of choice. And evidently we’re not alone – as BSC’s attracting everyone from those content to while away a couple of hours on their MacBook, to those with ‘proper’ jobs in the big city.

SevenStreets shared a flat white with owner/manager, Sam Tawil. “I did have some initial trepidation at the prospect of adding to an already crowded marketplace,” he tells us.

He needn’t have worried. Mere minutes after meeting him, Tawil’s enthusiasm for his trade comes across loud and clear.

So what’s the secret?

“If you make really good coffee, people will come.”

Good coffee is what Bold Street Coffee’s been pouring since June. Sourced from growers around the world, the current blend incorporates beans from Brazil and Guatemala, resulting in a smooth yet complex espresso with hints of toasted almond and chocolate.

Unlike the ubiquitous chains, who churn out the same bland brew whether you’re in Liverpool or Lisbon, Bold Street Coffee tirelessly toil to create complex and delicious new blends every time they restock. Their website describes the process with typical passion:

We were looking for something full bodied, sweet and fruity, distinctive and balanced…something which manages to strike a good balance of tasting delicious with milk and being a sweet, smooth yet complex espresso…

Sourcing his beans direct from the growers, Tawil is committed to ensuring a fair price, and forging mutually beneficial relationships for all concerned.

In the course of the conversation, it becomes clear Tawil has a simple plan: “to run the best coffee shop in Liverpool”.

We have a nagging fear though. Isn’t that how Starbucks started?

Tawil’s quick to allay our fears: “We’re called Bold Street Coffee. There’s only one Bold Street.”

Can’t argue with that logic. Seems Tawil’s well aware that the world doesn’t need another coffee franchise with prints on the walls depicting ancient Italian artisans, lugging around great bags of beans.

Bold Street Coffee doesn’t just reawaken our love of the bean, it shoots a long overdue jolt in the direction of lacklustre lattes across the city. Believe the buzz.

Bold Street Coffee
89 Bold Street, Liverpool

Mike Pinnington

14 Responses to “The Bold and the Beautiful”

  1. I couldn’t agree with this piece more – my Friday isn’t complete without popping into BSC for a Flat White and one of their excellent bacon sarnies.

    Apparently Leaf are opening a branch on Bold Street in the near future. Here’s hoping that doesn’t dent any of Bold Street Coffee’s trade.

  2. Are they now? That’s interesting, can Bold Street accommodate the chains, Brew, Bold Street Coffee AND Leaf?

    We’ll see, but I can’t see BSC suffering too much, it’s hard to even get a seat in there some weekends.

  3. Alexander

    Nero, Starbucks, Costa x2 (Waterstones), Brew, Leaf, Bold Street Coffee, Tabac and now leaf. Thats just one road! They’re just the coffeeshops! (& tea bars)

  4. Thing is, BSC has so quickly established a large and loyal following that is kind of peculiar to indies, that I’m willing to bet a bespoke cup of coffee they’ll be fine.

  5. Leaf on Bold Street is due to open on 25th November (well, at least according to a press release I received about it the other day anyway). I doubt it will dent Bold Street Coffee’s trade too much, but it will be interesting to see how Brew deals with the competition – particularly competition that’s practically next door.

  6. I had the opportunity to spend lots of time in Liverpool this past August and September while preparing the exhibition I put together for the Biennial; I spent every morning at BSC, it became part of my routine and it was the place where I had my morning meetings with colleagues. I am back in Manhattan where I live; I really miss BSC mornings; guys there are very friendly, the place is clean, neat and the latte I had every morning is better that what I find in in most places in New York . The quality of the rest of the food is also spotless. Even with competition, quality always stands out.
    Asher R.T.
    Producer of No Longer Empty on the Road sound installations at the Liverpool Biennial.

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