We get up, we get ready and we all find ways to get through the day. We find happiness within chaos and balance within variables. Some find solace in privacy and silence and some escape through the company of others. Enter 92 degrees, the place where both can retreat and where the one constant is good coffee.
The name is inspired by where they believe the best temperature for coffee extractions begins in a brew. A way to pay homage to the humble bean and and harnesses all its flavour. We left our thermometers at home on this occasion so we’ll have to take their word for it. They’re located in the Old Blind School, a neo-classical building founded in the 1790’s that most recently housed one of the Liverpool Biennial’s exhibitions. Coffee shops are getting tainted with the same student accommodation brush where people are asking “Do we really need another one?”. One afternoon at 92 degrees and we can confirm, it isn’t like the others.
Britain has always been known for being a tea drinking country but modern terrain has changed the way we think, act and consequently the way we drink. We guzzle oil and coffee in equal measures and depending on where you buy it, those two things could end up tasting the same. Liverpool is a city full of coffee shops so you’re probably thinking, what makes 92 degrees different? They had all sorts of elaborate USP’s planned about mish-mashing the world of vinyl and coffee together, ideas about bringing augmented reality and coffee together but as those ideas sit on the back burner, or should we say “coffee roaster”, it was where simplicity was born and chosen over the fancy. Hunks of steely machinery with nobs and levers coming out of every corner don’t usually make the most beautiful of centrepiece but this machine is a work of art and lays boldly behind the counter. They’re the only coffee shop in Liverpool that have a roaster on site and one of the few out of the whole North West that roast their own fresh beans daily. Watch the video of their first roast here. They decided to unveil the magic behind the coffee like a maverick who had been kicked out of the magic circle. Less David Blaine and more flat white.
The five owners are all good friends and all drew inspiration from their different corners of life but it was a coffee roasting shop just up the road called “Bellews” by the universities that really pushed them. Sadly, Bellews is no longer with us but it used to roast beans behind a hatched door every day. There was no shine about it, no neon signs or theatrics and no Instagram account. It was the simplicity that they became infatuated with and it was from then they were inspired to bring that experience back. We’ve only ever known a coffee bean to be dark in colour but when it is picked it is cherry red and the bean inside is an off-green. The roasting process is where the green beans turn dark in colour and there’s a certain romance behind watching the whole process. They plan to offer roasting sessions for the public once the chaos has settled down a bit where you can even create your own blend. It isn’t all about the coffee mind, they’ve got more tea than a Liverpudlian Nan and it comes in all different flavours. They also have a variety of homemade cakes, brownies, scones and all other sweet sins. 92 is an unfussy environment, an ever-developing working progress that is rustic yet distressed and boasts huge windows all around the coffee shop so you can enjoy the surrounding scenic view whilst you drink your coffee. There’s a communal bench cut from a healthy slab where the line between friends and strangers becomes lost.
Hope Street is home to a plethora of culture. Whether it be theatre or fine dining you’re after, there’s award winning architecture, food and hotels all on the same stretch and it even attracted the attention of GQ in their latest edition. One thing it has been in need of is a great coffee shop and thanks to 92 degrees coffee, our wishes have come true. 92 degrees coffee shop would be in contention for the best cup of coffee in Liverpool without the roasting experience propelling it. They’ve gone back to the roots of what opening a new place is all about and are just promising to do simple well. You may ask yourself, well, what is special about that and the fact it doesn’t feel it needs to be anything more is your answer. Independent Liverpool cardholders will be happy to know that it is 10% off everything any day of the week. 92 already has that feeling of a ‘local’ rather than a stop-off so make sure your next cup of coffee is here before it becomes everybody’s favourite haunt. Check out their Facebook and Twitter here to keep up with their latest news.