Last week, when I asked for coffee shop recommendations in a local Haywards Heath Facebook Group, two places came up time and time again: Slake and Lindfield Coffee Works, both in Lindfield. Slake was also one of The (Parent) Hood’s recommendations in their Six at 6pm.
I haven’t been to Lindfield for a long time, so I decided to take a morning off last week to visit. If you follow me on social, you’ll know that I’ve been eating out quite a lot. Don’t get me wrong. Any eating out is a treat. And it’s definitely something I really enjoy, no matter the occasion. But I rarely go out, just for me. So my trip to Lindfield really was a self-indulgent treat. And I loved it.
It took just over 15 minutes to drive to Lindfield. And parking was a breeze. If you haven’t been, Lindfield is a super pretty village just outside of Haywards Heath. The High Street is picture perfect. And the pond 😍. As I drove past the pond towards the High Street I spotted Slake, so decided that once parked I’d head there for an early lunch.
Walking into Slake is like walking into Elle Decoration. It’s tranquil and beautiful and instantly calm. When you’re treating yourself to a little window of R&R in the day, this hits the spot nicely. I love the calm colour scheme: white and black; almond pink and foggy grey. Everything inside is beautiful too: the plates, the plants, the terrazzo bases on the tables. You can choose a cosy little seating nook; or a tall chair at the window with stunning views over Lindfield Pond.
There’s a shelf with cups, plates, local coffee beans and other bits and pieces for sale. I love the minimalist approach in the shop. Everything well chosen, everything in it’s place. It’s exactly how I’d like to live in another dimension as a single 20-something.
The Food & Drink
There’s a soft drinks fridge in the bottom of the counter; a selection of quiches, cakes and salads above the counter and an extensive menu of hot drinks and smoothies. Everything you’d expect in a boutique coffee shop.
I’d already had a coffee after the school run and fancied something less caffeinated for lunch. I opted for an açai and berries smoothie with a bowl of orzo salad.
Both were really delicious; the smoothie was the star: thick, fresh, bursting with vibrant flavours and such a gorgeous deep purple. There’s no style over substance here. The attention to detail extends to painstakingly chosen glasses for the smoothies and food served on the prettiest Mleko Living ceramic stoneware plates (check out their website, their tableware is everything) .
Hattie the owner, is really lovely. Her coffee shop is a dream. It’s pretty, calm, tranquil: a lovely, quiet escape. I’m planning a visit again soon. It’s not child-friendly in the conventional sense butI’d be happy to take the girls in for a quick snack or drink. Between you and me though, I’m keeping this place for me. This is my new sanctuary. Next time I’lll leave the laptop at home and bring a book instead.
Slake is just opposite Lindfield Pond at 20 High Street.
Lindfield Coffee Works is a coffee lovers dream. It’s not dissimilar in feel to Small Batch in Brighton. But it’s much cooler. Neon signs, quirky decorations, an actual bar that you order from, chalk boards advertising pop-up events, shelves of coffee to take home, shelves of booze. Sacks of coffee beans; so much coffee equipment. The space reminded me of warehouse parties in London in the mid-00s and our old loft apartment in the North Laine. Yet, despite it’s cool, it’s very inviting. I walked in and felt at home. It’s welcoming and fun. The staff are lovely. The best comparison I can make is a hipster pub with all of the trimmings and Millennial inclusion. Everyone welcome. For me, this is ideal. Combining all the fun of the pub with daytime coffee drinking and family-friendly requirements. I need to check the opening hours but if this is open in the evenings, this is the perfect place for coffee-fuelled date nights too. I can’t wait to come here with friends and The Husband.
The Food and Drink
I was a little bit overwhelmed when I got to ordering my coffee. First of all, I’ve never been in a coffee shop like it; there’s a lot to take in. Then there’s the coffee menu. So many options. I asked what I should try: they make everything from filter and cappuccino to a V60 and Clever Dripper from the brew bar 🤷🏻♀️. I was met with a description of lattés and flat whites. Like I said, I was overwhelmed and some of us wear our expressions on our sleeves more than others. I opted for a flat white although I was really quite keen to try out a Chemex. What IS this? Anyone?
And they don’t just serve coffee. They have pretty much any drink you could want from milkshakes with added malt extract, to teas, turmeric lattes and booze. The full compliment. Oh, and parents, babycinos are free👌🏻.
The food menu looked great. They serve lots of tasty looking brunch options, grilled cheese sandwiches, sausage rolls, halloumi burgers, bagels and sour dough with vegan toppings, sharing boards, quiche, a great little kids menu, cakes and super colourful slabs of rocky road.
As I’d just walked up from Slake and had already had a smoothie and salad, I just had the flat white this time.
I plumped for a seat along the wall. I though it would be a great place to get some work done. But ended up in a big WhatsApp lunchtime chat with friends instead. I wished I had a real life friend with me as this is the perfect spot to catch up.
In contrast to Slake, this is somewhere I can’t wait to come and share with all the family. It’s bigger, noisier and it would be the perfect place to hang out with the girls. There’s lots of seating outside too, glorious on a hot day. They’d go wild for a slice of that rocky road and a babycino after school; I can safely say that half a cheese toastie for The Big One and the kids’ plate of humous, tortilla chips and grapes for The Little One would be a winning lunch. Especially if there was the promise of a milkshake too.
The other half will love the decent coffee and there are lots of dairy-free options on the menu. A strong “something for everyone” contender; perhaps even a new family favourite.
There’s a a pop up flower shop next week and I might just suggest going over next Saturday for lunch. And if we do, I’ll let you know how we get out with our children in tow.
Lindfield Coffee Works is tucked away, just off the High Street.
So, there you have it. The perfect tranquil spot to go for a light lunch, smoothie or coffee in a delightfully pretty cafe for a bit of peace and quiet with stunning views over Lindfield Pond; and a big, noisy family-friendly coffee pub with something on the menu for all the family. Oh stop it Lindfield, you’re spoiling us!