Coffee Room in Prague, Czech Republic
I also got the chance to chat with both Jiri and Monika, the creators and owners of Coffee Room, about their shop, lives, and love of coffee.
LFB: Hey there! Can you tell me a little bit more about you guys personally and how you got the idea of opening up Coffee Room?
J: Hey guys. Great having you here, thanks for stopping by. Ok then, I´ll try to be brief and not too boring! We´ve been married for about half a year, lived in London for more than three years, and love each other, life, food, COFFEE, travelling, and our pug called Churchill. We also love doing sports, so at least three times a week we go to play badminton. We also both still enjoy working at our little cafe; it´s really fun spending time with our lovely customers!
LFB: What got you interested in coffee and cafe culture in the first place?
J: It all started while we were living in London. I [Jiri] was the one who got us both interested in coffee. I was working in a busy cafe (not third wave though) and a friend of mine had also introduced me to “Kaffeine” close to Oxford St. From that time on I immediately became a coffee lover. The same thing happened to Monika once she walked into “Kaffeine” for the very first time. It wasn´t only coffee what got us interested. We loved everything about “cafe culture” – the people, vibes, music, it all was all so cool. It felt as if I had been blind before, as I didn´t know anything about coffee culture up until that point (ha-ha)!
LFB: Ok, so spill the beans (haha coffee joke, get it? Lame I know…) how much coffee do you both consume on a daily basis?
J: I consume a lot of coffee, seriously. When I´m at work, I start my morning shift with a flat white always immediately followed by a shot of espresso. (And that isn’t even counting tasting espressos when setting the grinder!) I don´t know why but I can only drink my first coffee with milk – after that I stick to black, so all the rest of my coffees are filters. I don´t even keep track of how many I have, but my body does seem to know when it´s too much, hah.
M: Compared to my husband I drink a lot less. A double macchiato (or piccolo) is my must-have in the morning. Then I drink and espresso or batch brew. I´m proud not to be addicted like Jiri. There are even some days when I don’t drink any coffee at all.
LFB: What sets Coffee Room apart from other coffee shops in Prague?
J and M: We often think about this and it was actually really important from the beginning for us to be different. First of all I would say the breakfasts. In most cafes in Prague you often get very similar food, so we decided that this would not be the case with our cafe. We started doing things that we really liked and that we were missing here in Prague after returning from London. I Also need to mention the vibes. Lots of people, mostly foreigners, tell us they don´t feel like they are in the Czech Republic when they´re in Coffee Room. And they really mean that it extends to all all aspects – design, customer service, baristas attitude.
Improving Coffee Room is also a constant topic of ours. We are still looking for new ideas on how to make our shop better for all customers. That´s why we travel a lot; to get inspired, To see how it [other coffee shops] works in the world. We don ´t want to get stuck. This is so important, especially in this kind of business, if you know what I mean. I think the best way is to be open-minded.
LFB: How do you incorporate conscious living (living a considered and meaningful life by caring about ourselves, our bodies, other people, animals and the world around us) into the concept of Coffee Room?
J: The current trends of trying to eat healthier, and to include more fresh fruits and veg into our meals, either for fitness or for better health, are obviously very important to us. That’s why we provide full vegetarian (or vegan with substation) breakfast options on our menu. We also bake all of our baked goods – banana breads, cakes, brownies, etc – and mostly use locally grown products. Our eggs that we use for baking come from a small family business from South Moravia where we are from. And these little things help, I think. Last month we got involved in „Water for Cameroon,“ a project that is really wonderful. The organization grows a tree for every 20CZK spent at Coffee Room. So let´s hope that our customers will be generous!
There is a well-known Movember project too and we´re happy that we could help a little last year with some donation.
LFB: What are your favorite drinks and food items on the menu?
J: These are my picks: flat white, v60, avocado bread with dried tomatoes, and toasted banana bread with our homemade peanut butter.
M: I love filter coffee and during summer time I love an espresso tonic – it was actually really popular last season. Food-wise I´d pick gorgonzola bread with pears, honey, and thyme – the best food option on the menu to me!
LFB: What are you favourite vegan dishes?
J: I´m totally obsessed with Southern Indian vegetable curry, so that´s the answer.
M: Any type of hummus with veggies. I´m just a hummus lover. I´m actually working on new breakfast menu for Coffee Room right now and there will be some vegan dishes for sure. We already tried couple of them at some special events in our shop and people loved them, so let´s do that!
LFB: Throughout your travels you must have also discovered amazing coffee shops/cafes all over the world. What are some of your recommendations?
J and M: Kaffeine (London), because it got us into cafe culture in the first place and
Bonanza (Berlin), because we just love them (and we use their beans). I also love The Curator (Manila), because we had the best espresso of our lives while there and experienced the best customer service ever.
LFB: What are your hopes and plans for the future both personally and for coffee Room? Do you plan to open up more coffee shops in the future?
J: At the moment we´re planning on opening one more coffee shop but the plans are hush hush for the moment. And personally? We still want to travel! It’s is our biggest passion. There are so many interesting destinations on our to-do list, like Tehran for example – that´s where we will be spending a couple of weeks this winter and I just can´t wait.
LFB: Thank you so much for sitting down with LFB and chatting! Is there anything you would like to say to the LFBers in closing? Where can LFBers find you guys if visiting Prague? (social media, address, etc.)
L and M: Dear LFBers, you’ve chosen such an amazing blog to follow. We´re so happy that Rae and her friend Hannah decided to visit us when they were here in Prague.
Well I hope you guys enjoyed reading this interview and getting to know more about both the minds behind Coffee Room and Coffee Room itself! And if you find yourself in Prague, you def. have to pop by and let them know who sent you!
LFB always discloses all partnerships. Thank you so much to Jiri and Monika of Coffee Room for the opportunity to experience their incredible cafe and indulge in some delicious food and drink! It’s partnerships like this that allow LFB to bring incredible adventures and experiences to the LFB community. (I was not paid for this or any other post about Prague)
Photography: Rae Tashman