This is Jack again, popping in with another great find from my recent trip to Oslo, Norway. Normally when I travel alone I do my best to avoid chain restaurants. If it’s just me, I figure that I can take the risk of a local place and if it’s bad then only I have to pay the price. However, sometimes the chain restaurants can be a great surprise and this is the case with the Kaffebrenneriet line of coffee shops in Oslo, Norway.
The company was started after their founder, Thomas, had spent a year exploring the US West Coast, from San Francisco up to Seattle, falling in love with the various espresso bars and coffee shops along the way. Upon his return to Oslo he looked for similar style cafes and was disappointed to not find anything that captured the same feeling of warmth and comfort. So in 1994, he bought an abandoned perfume store, renovated it and opened up his first coffee shop, Kaffebrenneriet, in Oslo, Norway.
Kaffebrenneriet now has 27 locations throughout Oslo and it seems like any time you are craving a coffee or fresh pastry that there is a location waiting nearby. Their stores are truly three shops in one. The espresso bar offers the normal assortment of bar beverages, such as lattes and cappuccinos, plus they also offer 5 other brewing methods including my current favorite, the Aeropress. Their boutique offers 20 different types of whole bean coffee, a wide assortment of teas and all of the various equipment and accessories a coffee lover could ask for. They also have a full service bakery which accepts deliveries twice a day of fresh pastries and breads from their own bakery located in Oslo. The sheer variety of drinks and food had me wishing that I had more time to try more of their offerings.
In my few days in Oslo, I visited 4-5 of their different locations and found the quality and experience to be similar in each case. Each location is different in design and reflects the feeling of the local neighborhood plus had a large seating area which made working out of the coffee shop extremely comfortable. (It’s tough holding business meetings at a coffee shop, but someone has to do it.) Free WIFI, a great cup of coffee, and a comfy place to sit? A traveler’s dream for sure!
When you travel what do you look for in cafes? What makes you stop at some and pass on others?
photography by Jack Fussell