Not a huge amount is known about its history, but we do know that the original owner was Mr Hassan in 1887. He had it until 1928 when he sold it to a Belgian man. Then, in 1946, he sold it to my grandad and it’s been in the family ever since. — Marisa Crocetta
Passing through Covent Garden and into Soho on a cold misty day in London, I was on my way to find Algerian Coffee Stores in Old Compton Street.
Algerian Coffee Stores is an Aladdin’s Cave of coffee and tea paraphernalia, loose leaf tea and coffee beans, oriental sweets. It is like something out of Arabian Nights or have been transported on a magic carpet to one of the bazaars in Istanbul, except the staff are English not Arabs or Turks.
Coffee is also served, though for me the beans too darkly roasted.
Mr Hassan, one of the first Algerians to arrive in London, opened the shop in 1887. He sold it to a Belgian gentleman in 1926, who in turn sold it to the grandfather of Marisa Crocetta in 1948. Marisa and her family still run the store.
The shop still retains some original features, the wooden shelves along the walls, the original wooden counter and display case.
Even if do not like coffee, worth a visit to see how Soho used to be.
Featured in 111 Coffee Shops in London That You Must Not Miss.
Special thanks to my lovely Russian friend Tatyana who told me of this coffee emporium and said I must visit.