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We rated the best places to get coffee around UCL

Sometimes we actually want more than just a caffeine fix

Coffee is every student's best friend – it gets us up in the morning, powers us through the day and, most importantly, supports us without judgment during our all-night library sessions. Without it, many of us would be comatose zombies, collapsed over a desk, softly moaning. So, in the interests of helping you smash your degree, we reviewed the cafes around UCL to find out where the best places are to get coffee.

The Old Refectory

There aren’t many positive things to say about the Old Refectory. Its coffee is the worst out of all of the ones we tried. It often tastes slightly burnt and you get to pay extra for the cloying bitter aftertaste; it’s more expensive than the Union coffee and the Print Room. But having said all this, it is very convenient for the Main Library and they do the biggest sized coffees – perfect for all-nighters.

Rating: 3/10

Cappuccino: £1.80

Union Cafes

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With Cappuccinos priced at £1.35, the Union cafes definitely have the best prices. Sadly, the low price is reflected in the coffee's lack of flavour. However, the coffee does its job of pumping caffeine around your system and stopping you from becoming comatose, so we can’t really complain too much.

Rating: 5/10

Cappuccino: £1.35


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We had differing opinions over Costa (the Italian hates their coffee and the English likes it because they add lots of milk), but whatever you think of the taste, it has to be acknowledged that it is much more expensive than the other coffee shops on campus. But their Christmas cups are so cute that it just about makes up for the price.

Rating: 6/10

Cappuccino: £2.35

Bloomsbury Cafe

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Conveniently located right below Bloomsbury Fitness and a minute away from the Main Library, it's perfect for an extra rush of energy or to delay going to the gym. It also has nice seats and couches for eating or studying, and is usually emptier than the other cafes around UCL. The prices are fairly similar to the other Union cafes, but we rated the coffee on the nicer side of the spectrum along with Print Room Cafe.

Rating: 7/10

Cappuccino: 1.35

Bloomsbury Coffee House

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The coffee here is slightly overpriced for the quality but still very good. Bloomsbury Coffee House satisfies all your Instagram desires with their lovely flowers, delicious food (the cakes are unbelievable) and quiet and picturesque interior.

Rating: 7/10

Cappuccino: 2.25

Dillons Coffee

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This fun, lively cafe is overpriced but still one of our favourites. The coffee is of high quality and, if you’re ever feeling depressed about life, their hot chocolate is a very effective cure. It’s lovely place to meet friends between lectures but if you go at lunch time (they have delicious toasties), be prepared to wait in line and to face fierce competition for tables.

Rating: 7/10

Cappuccino: 2.60

Lever and Bloom

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This charming, colourful cart next to Euston Church makes very nice coffee. Its prices are on the higher end and they do take a while to be made, but the presentation makes it worth the wait. On a sunny day, it’s a great place to kill an hour between lectures with your friends.

Rating: 7/10

Cappuccino: 2.70

Print Room

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Definitely the best coffee at UCL. It's more expensive than the Union cafes but the coffee is definitely worth the extra 25p. It's usually very busy, especially right after lectures, but the line always moves quickly and there tends to be an eclectic (occasionally just plain strange) music selection to entertain you.

Rating: 8/10

Cappuccino: 1.70

Caffe Russell

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A few minutes walk from UCL’s south quad and right underneath Senate House Library, we rated this as definitely the best coffee overall and also the best price for the quality. This sweet cafe, nestled between the trees and lawns of Russell Square, will make you forget you are in Central London. With its Italian baristas and delicious coffee, you will be able to imagine yourself somewhere scenic, far away from your coursework and deadlines.

Rating: 10/10

Cappuccino: 1.80