Bristol is fast becoming overrun with lovely hipster café’s. The sort of place where they can tell you the exact location of the bush that your coffee bean was harvested and the reading material on offer is likely to be an obscure surfing magazine printed on home made paper. Well that’s all well and good and I enjoy the thrill of sampling a cup of rare Ugandan coffee as much as the next person, sometimes though a small touch of refinement, with your brew can be a great pleasure.
Stokes Croft, North Street, Gloucester Road and many other parts of Bristol are perfect for the shoes with no socks, moustache twirling amongst us but what about Henleaze? Well, the only talk relating to hip, in this part of town is related to how your hip replacement operation went rather than the more bohemian chat in other neighbourhoods.
How nice then, to visit the Café 96, located in the heart of Henleaze. This smallish café has managed to transform a corner unit of a 1960’s look building into a tiny Art Deco gem. Beautifully fitted out, once inside you feel as though you have entered a portal to another time and place. Many of the fittings are original 1930’s items that have carefully coordinated from a variety of sources as their website explains. The counter area, including a small circular bar is particularly lovely.
The mood was further complemented with the discreet background music, which featured the hottest hits of 1938, brilliant!
The coffee is good and strong and there was a wonderful array of mid morning pastries and cakes on offer at the time of my visit. The café also offers a substantial array of breakfast and meal options.
It’s a place that exudes gentle sophistication, so if your taste is more Damon Runyon than Damien Hirst, this could be the place for you.