Coffee at Symposium © Social Streets C.I.C

The best places to have a coffee on Roman Road – chosen by you

As everyone here at Roman Road LDN is a huge caffeine fan, we decided to ask you, our readers, for your favourite places on the Roman Road and nearby to grab your lattes or cappuccinos. We’re going to start with some cafes around the eastern end of the Roman Road and saunter up towards Bethnal Green with your recommendations.

Nunnery Café, Bow Road

Cakes and pastries at the Nunnery Cafe

Found next the Nunnery Gallery on Bow Road, the aptly named Nunnery Café offers a fully vegetarian menu and delicious AllPress coffee. The sandwiches here are prepared in-house each day, and the walls are hung with gorgeous affordable art. With the gallery right next door, take the chance to grab a coffee and make an afternoon of it.

Address: 181 Bow Road, London E3 2SJ

Targa Green Café, Tredegar Road

Coffee and cake on a table with flowers
Targa Green Cafe cake and coffee

Slightly off the Roman Road Targa Green Cafe got the vote from two of you and it’s a charming little venue. Colourful tiles and delicious cakes make this a bit of an office favourite as well. Its warm, Moroccan-inspired interior with traditional Moroccan music pulsing in the background gives Targa Green Cafe a wonderful community feel that’s bursting with life. ‘It used to be a famous photographers gallery. They do amazing buffet lunches too!’ you told us.

Address: 137 Tredegar Road, London E3 2EU

Idea Store Bow, Roman Road

Photo of latte in a glass, on plate with spoon
Idea Store Latte in a glass

‘Best latte’ one of you told us. Ours came in a beautiful glass cup, and you can sit at a comfortable table here and read your library book in peace. It’s wheelchair accessible and there is a public loo. Family friendly venue.

Address: 1 Gladstone Place, Roman Road, Bow, London E3 5ES

Zealand Road Coffee Shop, Roman Road

Latte in a glass at Zealand Roman Road

On the corner of Zealand Road lies every hipster’s cafe heaven. Beautiful wooden tables, grey brick walls, geometric paintings and loads of natural light make it one of the most Instagrammable spots on the Roman. But Zealand is not only perfect for improving your social media feed. ‘Free babycinos, wonderful staff.’ commented Anna Sudbury of EatDrinkEastLDN and ‘They do really good cake’ said another Facebook commenter. The staff, always in a happy mood, are sure to bring a smile to your face.

Address: 391 Roman Road, London E3 5QS

Sazzy and Fran, Roman Road

Coffee in a blue cup at Sassy and Fran
Enjoy the barista’s best at Sazzy and Fran

Sazzy and Fran is best known for its delicious plant-based food and as well as being a tranquil little oasis in the middle of the busy East End. Almost everything here is made in-house, apart from the pastry which is delivered fresh every morning. Oh and their Instagram? Pure foodporn.

Address: 33 Roman Rd, London E2 0HU

Recharge, Roman Road

Coffee in a brown cup and banana bread
Coffee and banana bread at Recharge – delicious

Does what it says on the tin. Their delicious Turkish breakfast gives you an instant energy kick, as well as their fresh coffee and juices. It’s not unusual to see joggers and dog-walkers popping in as it’s one of the most favourite and affordable places to eat and recharge on Roman Road. Top tip? Try the homemade banana bread- it’s soft, it’s warm, it’s delicious.

Address: 140 Roman Rd, London E2 0RY

Symposium, Roman Road

Coffee in a red cup and saucer, Symposium, East London.
Coffee at Symposium © Social Streets C.I.C

Symposium has a lot of admirers among local coffee-fanciers. They serve artisan wood-roasted Italian coffee and bespoke coffee blends all day and their coffee beans are sourced from Brazil, Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Colombia, Congo, Ethiopia and India. ‘For when you need cheese as well as coffee’ says Anna Sudbury while another Facebook commenter added, ‘Symposium pairs coffee with the best Italian wine …can’t beat that!’

Address: 363 Roman Rd, London E3 5QR

Mae + Harvey, Roman Road

Two hands hold a cup of coffee
Delicious cappuccino at Mae and Harvey

Mae and Harvey is a cosy little cafe selling very Instagrammable cafe food on the Roman Road. Behind the black facade is a neutral coloured cafe brightened up with jazzy tiles. ‘Mae and Harvey for pancakes and pretty tables,’ commented Anna Sudbury of EatDrinkEastLDN.

Address: 414 Roman Rd London E3 5LU London

Mono, Roman Road

Coffee in a glass, Roman Road in background
Coffee at Mono

Its interiors might not be as fashionable as the other coffee shops on our list, but it’s certainly the cafe with the biggest terrace and lots of loyal customers. ‘Perfect for watching the world go by’ one of you said and we agree. If you get hungry during shopping at the market, Mono also offers fresh baguettes and bagels made to order.

Address: 535 Roman Rd, London E3 5EL

Loafing, Roman Road

Coffee and croissant on a pretty flowered plate
Coffee goes so well with a croissant

They say what is small is also cute and that rule definitely works for Loafing. The tiny corner cafe has everything you need for a morning pick me up – delicious coffee, fresh croissants and an outside space perfect for people watching. The rustic wooden interiors are just there to delight your eyes. Loafing also make sweet and savoury crêpes, including a vegan option.

Address: 407 Roman Road, London E3 5QS

Quarantacinque, Roman Road

Cappuccino on a marble table
Italian style at Quarantacinque

This bijou venue at the Bethnal Green end of the Roman Road has Italian style written all over it. Coffee is all Caffe Molinari served however you want. Settle in with your latte here for some great people watching. You can bring Fido too if you sit at the front tables outside and it’s family friendly as well – bonus points. Owner Francesco Ragazzi is a keen photographer and created atmospheric snaps of his coffee customers during lockdown.

Address: 45 Roman Road E2 OHU

The Bakery Room, Roman Road

Coffee in white cup, with saucer, on a marble effect table and small plant pot
Cappuccino at the Bakery Room © Social Streets C.I.C

In the middle of Roman Road market lies The Bakery Room, a bright bubble-gum pink café which exudes total joy. The windows facing the market are filled with sweet treats: large profiteroles ooze with cream; raspberry tarts show off their vivid red fruit, and pastries are draped in chocolate and icing. The café is light and airy, with the wide windows, the perfect little spot for some excellent people watching, which can be made even better over a warm cup of authentic Italian-made coffee.

Address: 577 Roman Road E3 5EL

Best of the rest

A few of our favourites didn’t get a mention by you, so we’d like to shout out to Cafe East, Pavilion in Victoria Park, the Coffee Room on Grove Road and the Larder.

If you enjoyed this article, you might like our round-up of Best vegan and vegetarian cafes

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Tabitha Potts

Tabitha Potts is a writer living in East London, which inspires much of her work. She has had several short stories published in print and online and was most recently long-listed for the Royal Academy and Pin Drop Short Story Award. She loves reading books, looking at art and kickboxing. Read her work at:

Tabitha Potts has 30 posts and counting. See all posts by Tabitha Potts

One thought on “The best places to have a coffee on Roman Road – chosen by you

  • My votes go to Loafing, the Pavilion in the park and Zealand!


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