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Madam Chi Coffee Lounge

187 Upper St London N1 1RQ

This stylishly understated independent coffee bar makes a welcome addition to Islington’s otherwise Starbucks-dominated main shopping street. An offshoot of the Madam Chi fashion label – check out the clothes on their website – it’s an inviting place to linger, with friendly staff who won’t hurry you out however long you spend using the free wifi. It’s larger than it looks, with room at the back and a calm upstairs room too, though if you’re here to hang out then the best seats are right at the counter. The coffee’s great, while a see-through teapot of whatever tea you fancy, large enough to share, is good value. They also offer wonderful truffles and cupcakes, plus sandwiches and they have a drinks licence too, so you can even get a champagne cream tea.

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