Lincoln Coffee Culture: How local businesses are keeping up with the crave for caffeine

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A growing demand for coffee has meant a remarkable increase in coffee shops and cafés.  Barely being able to walk 100m in any direction without being able to purchase a cup has created a ‘coffee culture’ within the city.

Coffee culture is a social atmosphere or behaviour that depends heavily upon coffee, particularly in a social capacity.

Photo by Jemima Sullivan for CityX.

Lincoln is filled with independent coffee houses, national chains and unique bistros so you’re never far away from your next caffeine fix.

With another coffee shop, 200 Degrees, set to open at the Cornhill Quarter in March, CityX spoke to local businesses about Lincoln’s coffee culture, and how they are attempting to attract customers with so many venues to choose from.

Making the premises unique

Christine Spencer opened Coffee Bobbins at 28 The Strait nearly two years ago.

Christine grew up in Lincoln and has always loved the history behind the city, which was her main reason for starting her business.

Photo by Jemima Sullivan for CityX.

When asked about how Coffee Bobbins keeps up with the high coffee demand, she said: “We don’t go over the top with syrups and specialty drinks but we do have them along with a Christmas drink.”

With coffee culture behaviour, Christine has noticed that people stay longer to socialise and has also noticed an increase of regular customers.

The coffee is produced locally, and local ingredients are used, which is also used to make their homemade cakes.

Christine at Coffee Bobbins. Photo by Jemima Sullivan for CityX.

She said: “I think it’s quite easy to get side tracked and to try and do what everybody else is doing, you have to stick to what you want to do.

“If you end up following the crowd you end up not being unique and not who you are and that’s important.”

By focusing on herself and her business, Christine has created a relaxed atmosphere which keeps her customers coming back for more.

Keeping up with new trends

Coffee Aroma can be found at 24 Guildhall Street and since opening in 2005 has been named one of the top 10 coffee houses in the country by The Guardian.

Andrew Carnell has been owner for four and a half years and has perfected the art of making of a ‘traditional coffee’.

Andrew Carnell, owner of Coffee Aroma. Photo: Sarah Barker for CityX

He has also noticed changes within the industry for example, an increase of milk alternatives and requests for smaller and stronger drinks.

People tend to stay around 40 minutes to an hour, either socialising or working, this is because of the relaxed atmosphere and traditional coffee.

He said: “There’s a whole list of things to keep up with coffee culture, we are open late, we often have live music on and offer milk alternatives.

Photo: Guy Owen

“Our equipment is the best you can buy which allows us to produce high quality products consistently.

“We go out and directly pick our coffee beans and then blend and roast it to our specification, it’s all about keeping and using it fresh.”

Why Lincoln’s the place to be for coffee culture

In March 2019, 200 degrees will be opening the doors of their eighth coffee shop to the public.

The history and architecture is the reason behind choosing Lincoln said Tom Vincent, co-founder and director.

Work is currently underway at the new coffee shop. Photo: Jemima Sullivan for CityX

He said: “We want to support Lincoln’s burgeoning coffee population and become an integral part of the vibrant community by offering a comfortable and stylish venue that makes people feel at home.

“We hope to host a series of pop up events to align ourselves with other Lincoln-based brands and offer the community something extra.”

The company will also offer a barista school to allow customers to visit an engaging space and learn the craft of the bean, particularly the local students.