Think you know all the best cafes in London?
Whether you need a quick pit-stop to refuel for your day, a quiet spot to recharge, or a vibrant café recommendation to impress a friend (or your Instagram followers), St James’s has everything you could need – for those in the know. Uncover the best hidden cafes in St James’s with our guide.
Rose Bakery at Dover Street Market
Nestled in a window-lined corner of the top floor of Dover Street Market, you’ll find hidden gem, Rose Bakery. Perched overlooking London rooftops, founders Rose Carrarini and her husband Jean Charles, wanted to “create a place where people feel at home”.
Offering breakfast, healthy, wholesome lunches and afternoon tea, the Anglo-French bakery’s menu changes daily. Everything from the butter to its sodas, jams and pasta is made from scratch. Menu staples include satisfying seasonal quiches, sourdough sandwiches and veg-packed soups. With inviting mounds of fresh salads and cakes displayed on the counter in front of its stainless steel open kitchen, Rose Bakery is a welcome secluded spot to catch up on work or with friends.
For an afternoon pick-me-up, you can’t beat the cake selection, which might include rose, almond and lemon cake, a vegan-pleasing lemon and polenta cake, buttermilk scones served with clotted cream and homemade jam and its legendary carrot cake.
Combined with the relaxed atmosphere, friendly service and piles of the latest style magazines, it’s not surprising that for those in the know, Rose Bakery is more than a break from shopping, it’s the destination itself.
JJAM café at Osprey London
Founded by Graeme Ellisdon in 1980, Osprey London is a British luxury leather company renowned for its beautiful handcrafted bags. Think hard-working day-to-night zip-around bags, covetable cross-bodies in punchy pastels that convert to clutches, work-appropriate totes in classic colours and practical weekend bags in sensible shades.
You’re in for a real treat with a visit to its two-floor London flagship store, a gorgeous Grade II listed building at 27 Regent Street St James’s. Explore Osprey’s timeless collection and bag a delicious pastry from the JJAM café, occupying a quant corner on the ground floor. Choose from Instagrammable lattes and cold-pressed juices, alongside beautiful Parisian-style pastries and canelés.
Wander down to the lower ground floor café, wine bar and co-working space. Keep your eyes peeled for its revolving series of yoga classes, wine tastings and DJ evenings. This cute, secluded café has already become one of our go-to coffee stops near Piccadilly Circus.
Take a break from the buzz of the city and step into what could be London’s living room. Wander past shelves bursting with glossy publications and head to the back of grand Maison Assouline for its Swan Bar. Daytime is all about pastries and light bites, with punchy cocktails served later on.
Davy’s St James’s
Venture down historic Crown Passage and duck into the original cellar vaults for an impressive wine list (including over 40 served by the glass), sandwiches and private rooms for special meals and smart gatherings at Davy's St James's.
3 and 6 Bar
Fortnum and Mason houses all kinds of trendy private dining spaces, tea salons and attractive counters, but its intimate third floor bar is particularly special. Take a seat and order a homemade scotch egg, the original travellers’ snack, invited right here in 1738. Or simply relax with a coffee or a stiff drink in this cosy bar tucked away from the hustle and bustle of Piccadilly.
Poster Bar by José Pizarro
Feed your hunger for good food and great art at Poster Bar in the Royal Academy of Arts. Found on the ground floor underneath the more formal restaurant, this all-day bar displays some of the Academy’s historic posters and serves up tantalising tapas plates from celebrated Spanish chef Jose Pizarro. You can buy the prints too, of course.
Have we missed somewhere special? Tag us in your favourite hidden cafes of St James’s on Instagram at @StJamesLondon.