It’s pretty noticeable that food and drink options and standards have rocketed in recent years. There’s untold choice on the high street, luxury venues are more accessible in the age of discounts and if you’re heading to any festivals this summer – or any market, riverside or warehouse pretty much – you’ll have a plethora of gourmet options to satisfy your growling hunger.
A great example of this is Said in the heart of Soho; far beyond a coffee shop, it’s a beautiful store and café dedicated to the finest Italian chocolate, coffee and everything related. And it’s not quantity over quality – there’s no crap (nasty hydrogenated oil etc), high cocoa solids (percentages vary depending on what you choose) and authentic Italian recipes. A chat with owner Andrea revealed that he owns Said with his business partner, whose grandfather founded the factory in Rome around 90 years ago. I love a bit of heritage, and the wall covered in vintage chocolate molds displays it perfectly.
Said’s hot chocolate is rich and thick, and bubbles away behind the counter in separate white, milk and dark cauldrons. You can even have it served in little cups made of chocolate.
There are mountains of truffles, caramels and pralines, a vast array of homemade cakes and puddings and huge slabs of pure chocolate sitting in piles on the counter. Everything is either made on-site or brought over from Rome.
They have a huge kitchen downstairs and do sandwiches etc for lunch – I’ve only sampled the sweet offering so far but will be back.
41 Broadwick St, London W1F 9QL