AMT Coffee @ Central station Newcastle

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18th November we took another trip to central station to go to one of the remaining coffee outlets that we have not been to. This time it was to visit AMT which is on the main concourse in the station. As mentioned in previous reviews of central station it looks great now that they have done some redevelopment. AMT do not advertise a flat white on the board, but this is standard for most places that serve coffee, we asked and they said yes they can do one. Unfortunately that is where the positives end

You will see from the scores below how we rated the flat white

Taste 1.5/10

Flavour 1.5/10

Aroma 2/9

Temperature 0/3

Appearance 0.5/6

Consistency 0.75/3

Smoothness 2/10

Total 8.25/50

So this scores 1 bean on our scale

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As you can see we thought that this was a really poor flat white, far and away the worst we have tried so far. The main comments were that it had a burnt woody taste with few redeeming points. The milk was far far too hot, one of the ninja’s ended up with a burned lip, An other had a skin form on the top of the coffee/milk, I can’t say I have ever seen this on a coffee. The milk also tasted burnt

The only positive point we could find was that the disposable cups were really good and insulated as the cup did not feel too hot despite the heat of the coffee.

To summarise I would say this coffee is like a second hand car that looks good from the outside, but once you get it home you realise that the whole underside is rusty and the engine in shot, only one place for the car and that’s the scrap yard.

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AMT’s philosophy is ‘the real coffee connoisseurs know that whenever they see the original, distinctive, AMT coffee bar, they will be served the best coffee in the UK’ unfortunately on this occasion they did not deliver.

* Disclaimer – coffee ninja set out to find the best flat white in Newcastle, we are here to inform and advise, but recommend people make up their own mind. We are reviewing based on our opinion as a group and it is only our opinion. This was reviewed at the Newcastle branch in central station and no other store .

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Coffee Ninja the ratings so far

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Based on the bean and £ criteria recently added I thought I would summarise the places that we have visited and reviewed so far for flat whites

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9bar Coffee Grey street 41.25 out of 50
Lola’s Coffee @ central station 40 out of 50
Olive & Bean 40 out of 50
Central Bean Coffee House Newcastle 39.5 out of 50
Pumphrey’s @ Grainger market 39.5 out of 50

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Harvest canteen – OCC Jesmond 37.5 out of 50

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Starbucks Neville street 26 out of 50
Filmore & Union @ central station 25.5 out of 50
Costa @ central station 25.25 out of 50
Caffe Nero express @ central station 24.5 out of 50

£
Olive & Bean £1.69
Lola’s Coffee @ central station £2.00

££
Caffe Nero express @ central station £2.25
Central Bean Coffee House Newcastle £2.25

£££
Pumphreys @ Grainger market £2.30
Costa @ central station £2.40
Filmore & Union @ central station £2.50

££££
9Bar Coffee £2.70

The ratings for the coffee and price

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Ok so this is not a review but it is how we will be adding to our ratings going forward.

Obviously we be will rating the coffee using beans rather than stars. It will use the totals that we give in our review

So these are the ratings for the coffee are below

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0 – 9 This is barely coffee, instant may be better

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10 – 19 This is below average, there is better coffee out there

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20 – 29 This is average, this will give you the coffee fix if your passing and is ok but don’t go out your way

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30 – 39 This is a decent coffee, seek out this place if you get a chance

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40 – 50 This is an excellent coffee, go out your way to try this place and you won’t be disappointed

We have also rated the coffee based on price, the ratings are based on the prices in the Newcastle area.

£ – Less than £2.00 The cheapest you will find
££ – £2.01 – £2.25 Good value
£££ – £2.26 – £2.50 Average
££££ – £2.51 – £2.75 Slightly expensive
£££££ – More than £2.76 Most expensive you will find

You can use the bean rating in conjunction with the £ rating to give an overall judgement of the coffee. So for example if the price is £2.80 but has a rating of 5 beans is still probably worth a try

Costa @ central station newcastle

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7th November we took a quick trip to costa at central station, the place itself is pretty nice as most of the concessions in the station are, now that the station has been refurbished, the staff are friendly and are getting into the Christmas spirit even at the start of November

Scores for the flat white can be found below

Taste 6/10
Flavour 5.5/10
Aroma 3.25/9
Temperature 1.25/3
Appearance 2.25/6
Consistency 2/3
Smoothness 5/9

Total 25.25/50

This was a mild coffee that was slightly sweet and citrus, a bit milky and slightly too hot. Too large a portion for a flat white.

Overall as all the national chains are proving a palatable coffee that does not really set the world alight, can only be compared to a reliable mid-range family car. It will do the job and get you here without turning any heads, but next time you change your car you will probably go for a different model

9Bar coffee Grey street Newcastle – the bar has been raised

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Slight delay in getting this review but on 3rd November we visited 9 bar on Grey street next door to the theatre royal. The shop is quirky with what looks old school furniture it had a nice area outside to sit as well, but not really the weather for it at this time of year. On the day we went I think that they were serving ‘Bernard’ by colour coffee. I think that this is the blend that they serve on a regular basis.

As we have done with all of the other places so far we tried and scored a flat white so the results are below

Taste 8.75/10
Flavour 8.25/10
Aroma 7.25/9
Temperature 2.5/3
Appearance (design on top) 4.75/6
Consistency 2.75/3
Smoothness 7/9

Total 41.25/50

As you can see from the score above 9 bar has set the new bench mark for flat white is Newcastle. It Perfect amount of milk. Good intense coffee flavour balanced with some sweetness and floral notes some of us also thought that the coffee had a toffee/caramel flavour

We will definitely come back and we also love the custom 9bar cups

There are no lines or comparisons needed for this coffee, this is simply a great coffee that you must go and try when you are in Newcastle

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Coffee ninja visit to Harvest Canteen – OCC

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Saturday 1st November we had a family coffee ninja visit to harvest which is the OCC (Ouseburn Coffee Company) canteen in Jesmond. OCC are an artisan roastery established in 2012 and recently opened harvest to sell its coffee. The canteen itself has not been open very long and is pretty minimalistic so is spacious inside, but some of the ‘picnic’ tables are not very sturdy and there are the some random expensive looking furniture items around the outer walls at the back of the seating area.

As this was a weekend we invited our partners, wives and children so in total there were 10 of us 8 adults a toddler and a baby. We all ordered food at various times and to be honest the staff seemed very stressed and not very welcoming or friendly. It was as if it was an effort to serve us. I would say that the place was not really child or disabled friendly either.

We all had some food or other,ma number of us had poached eggs which were pretty good but the service was slow, and again when our food arrived no smile or polite conversation

As we have done with all of the other places so far we tried and scored a flat white so the results are below

Taste 7.5/10
Flavour 6/10
Aroma 6.5/9
Temperature 2.5/3
Appearance (design on top) 5/6
Consistency 2.5/3
Smoothness 7.5/9

Total 37.5/50

In summary the flat white was Floral and citrusy and slightly like caramel but there was not much aroma. A good and pleasant flat white

So overall this coffee is pretty good but not quite up there with the best we have tried. It’s like a decent German car claiming to be a BMW but not quite hitting the mark, and when you complain to the salesman he is no longer interested as he already got the sale.

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