Coffee Strong: I travelled through blistering winds and rain for 20 minutes to find a new hidden gem coffee shop in Leeds with an extensive menu - and it was all worth it

Liana Jacob was looking for shelter from the blistering wind and rain when she discovered a new cafe she had not heard of before - Coffee Strong - in Leeds and after some time looking for the shop, she was pleasantly surprised by the quality.

I was meeting a friend of mine near Leeds station for lunch earlier this week; it was very windy and the rain would not stop.

We were desperate to find an i ndependent cafe, somewhere new to try, and were relieved to discover Coffee Strong - only a seven minute walk away from where we were. Perfect. We would escape the horrible weather soon.

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Little did we know that it would take us a good 20 minutes to get there as it was very well hidden. My hair was flying all over the place and my makeup was smudging from the rain.

My friend Laiza (left) and I (right) at Coffee Strong.My friend Laiza (left) and I (right) at Coffee Strong.
My friend Laiza (left) and I (right) at Coffee Strong.

After stumbling into the Crowne Plaza, the manager there redirected us to the correct place. The area around the shop did not have any street signs and the building wasn’t very well labelled either.

The entrance of the coffee shop was on the side of the building. You had to get pretty close to see the signage.

Feeling relieved to be inside and out of the miserable weather, we walked in with no expectations.

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The two desserts we ordered.The two desserts we ordered.
The two desserts we ordered.

We were pleased to discover that the look of the shop on the inside had a very classy vibe, almost like a spa, with a nature-themed colour palette, green plants on each table and grey velvet seats and sofas.

There weren’t many customers inside, though it was a weekday. As we walked towards the till, there was one woman working there smiling as we approached her and greeted us.

Good start. She asked if we wanted any recommendations but we took the menu and found a place to sit down.

Perusing the menu, I noticed how extensive it was; many options to choose from and this made it harder to decide.

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Croissant stuffed with raspberries and Nutella chocolate.Croissant stuffed with raspberries and Nutella chocolate.
Croissant stuffed with raspberries and Nutella chocolate.

I ended up picking the tomato, pesto and cheese panini, my friend chose the spicy chicken and cheese panini and we shared a red berry herbal tea. We also agreed to indulge in two desserts to share: a croissant stuffed with raspberries and Nutella chocolate and a rich chocolate cupcake. They looked amazing, so we took a few pictures.

They tasted as good as they looked and I enjoyed catching up with my friend while we took in the atmosphere.

I wondered how I had never heard of this cafe before. I was told it only opened in February last year.

Before I knew it, we were ready to leave the warmth and get back outside into the wind and rain - which had gotten worse by this point.

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When we paid for our food and drink I did notice how expensive it was as our order came to around £19 altogether, but the quality of food and its atmosphere made up for it.

It had been a great escape from the weather.

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