Bristol has its fair share of excellent cafes (look here if you don’t believe me), but Tincan Coffee Co. on North Street is one of the best places to get your pre-ride caffeine fix.
I wasn’t sure whether to review Bristol’s Tincan – it’s not exactly your classic “cafe stop”. But, in a similar vein to my review of Mud Dock, it makes such a good place to socialise or refuel at before or after a ride that my mind was made up. The review must go on.
A ‘specialist coffee house’ based first on North Street, Southville, and now also Clare Street in the centre of Bristol, you’d expect Tincan to offer up a pretty smart brew. And indeed it does, the establishment capably making our list of the 5 best coffee houses in Bristol.
Dipping in occasionally for a flat white or long black, I’ve been impressed by the consistency of the coffee served at Tincan. Not only is the coffee of a high standard, it’s always the same. I like that. Just look at my Instagram feed.
Flavour-wise, the house blend differs from season to season, but I’ve never been disappointed by the offering. The words ‘sweet’, ‘nutty’ and ‘pleasant’ come to mind – everything a good house blend should be.
Of course, I can’t comment on any specific single origin guest coffees, but variety is forthcoming with a guest espresso and single origin filter always on rotation. Well done Clifton Coffee (Tincan’s supplier).
Living only a mile from Tincan’s North Street base, I’m a frequent visitor and have had the chance to sample its cake and food without limitation. And, generally speaking, I’ve been very impressed.
There’s something for everyone here – healthy breakfasts, freshly prepared pastries and home baked cakes. The selection appears to be largely in a state of flux, but high performers include the flapjacks, brownies and carrot cake. Place your faith in one of that triumvirate and you will be rewarded.
Feeling a little more adventurous? The savoury selection at Tincan has also impressed – the word on the street is that the homemade baked beans are a real treat. Also sampled is the wonderful bacon sandwich, and sourdough toast – everything has been delicious, Tincan has not dropped the ball for a minute.
As mentioned at the top of this review, Tincan isn’t your classic cycling cafe stop. There’s little outdoor space, enough for perhaps 12 at a push and, being on North Street, the interior is always damn busy. Besides, it’s in the city.
But as a place for a few to meet before or after a ride, it’s fantastic. You needn’t even worry about locking your bikes as the shop is largely glass-fronted, leaving prying hands little opportunity for bike-thievery.
Tincan also performs well in the ambience stakes. Always welcoming and friendly, you never feel like your lycra is out of place (though it probably is). And the decor is comfortable and a pleasure to behold, with plenty of wood adorning just about everything.
There can be only one conclusion about Bristol’s Tincan; it’s one of the city’s finest places for cyclists to grab a coffee. Granted, you may not want to cycle into the city to visit, but as a place for resident cyclists to enjoy before or after a ride, it’s great.