I’m all for championing local businesses because with business rates, rents and other expenses, it’s really hard for local shopkeepers to survive these days especially catering establishments and not living in the centre of London itself, it’s sometimes hard to find somewhere nice to eat when you don’t necessarily want to hop on the tube. So when a fabulous little eatery crops up locally, I make it my intention to check it out so it was a real delight when Koho opened in Little Chalfont in Amersham a couple of years ago. Amersham is a beautiful affluent market town in the Chilterns and though I don’t actually live there, it has long been an ambition of mine to move to the area from Pinner ever since my husband had his business in Amersham. It was a real pleasure to drive from Pinner along Chorleywood and Little Chalfont to get to Amersham three days a week where I worked with him and so by moving to the area, I will be right on the door step of this little gem of a coffee shop.
Three enthusiastic friends, Sami, Caroline and Rich had a vision to open an affordable place to eat, a different concept, certainly not the customary café you find on most high streets and with this in mind, they made their dream a reality with the launch in September 2015 of Koho Coffee and it has quickly become the hub of the community. With a sleek black but minimalist exterior and a cool contemporary interior, the small but cute seating area is full to the brim every lunch time and that’s always a good sign. Everything from the tea cups to plates, mugs, lighting and other knick knacks ensures a really quirky feel to Koho which I absolutely love. Koho can also be hired for pop ups and parties as well as other events going on throughout the year such as pizza pop ups, summer soirée’s, Koho Lates, where they open from 6:30pm to 11:00pm featuring a different theme once a month such as Prosecco and Cocktails, sharing platters and small plates and also later on in the year, Koho Festive where Koho is transformed into a grotto with all sorts of magical Christmassy events, it really is the place to visit in Amersham.
My daughter loves Amersham and misses the fact that daddy isn’t there anymore since he located his business to Henley-on-Thames but often wants to visit Amersham when she is off school and with Koho being round the corner, it’s the perfect excuse to do a bit of shopping and then head there for lunch and this is what we did last week. We were incredibly lucky to find a table, in fact, we had bar type window seats and stools looking out into Little Chalfont rather than a wall which is sometimes the case! Above us and all the rage now, burnished bronze low hanging pendant lights.
For lunch my daughter ordered a really zingy healthy juice of pineapple, strawberries and orange which Koho call a Detox Smoothie and I had a refreshing pot of tea served in really cute earthenware cups, it’s a bit strange to hold a teacup with no handles but you soon adjust to the feel and even though the tea is piping hot, just how I like it, my cup is remarkably cool in every sense of the word! My daughter chose her customary crushed avocado and it’s something I usually order too but this time I went for something quite different containing sautéed potatoes and sausage!
Our food arrived about 10 minutes after drinks and I’m quickly reminded why I come to Koho despite it being just a tad pricey for a local place, I honestly don’t care because the portion sizes are more than generous and the food is absolutely top quality.
My daughter’s dish is crushed avocado on two crumpets with crispy slices of chorizo on the side with roasted tomatoes and two perfectly poached eggs, well I could tell from the noises she was making that she was in culinary heaven and it’s not difficult to see why when in front of you, you have such a stunning plate of food.
I chose something different as I wanted to offer a fair review and if I could, I would have ordered a third dish to try but having been here before and had the smoked salmon brunch, I can honestly say with complete confidence that whatever you choose, you simply can’t go wrong. Koho also have on the menu something called “Bubbly Brunch” which essentially is your brunch dish accompanied with a choice of tea or coffee, juice and a glass of Prosecco and at £18.95, I think it’s a great deal. My dish was locally sourced Old English Sausage with spinach and potato and eggs “your way” which basically means you get to choose how you want your eggs whether that’s poached, fried or scrambled. I’m a sucker for poached eggs so that’s what I chose and although so simple to make, well you’d think so, it’s just dropping eggs into boiling water after all? But actually no, they’re so easy to mess up as I have found to my detriment, once wasting 6 eggs before I succeeded!
The sausages were sliced into big portions, I’d say there were at least two in the dish, so meaty and sweet, they complimented the potato and spinach pan roast perfectly which were so crispy and moorish, the addition of the spinach made me feel I was at least having something healthy! Also in the dish was tender roasted marrow, ahh, the much maligned marrow, well it really is a wonderful vegetable if you just add a bit of imagination to the cooking of it and also some roasted tomatoes. Now to the poached eggs, how can you get excited at the prospect of piercing a poached egg? Oh but I do relish it because when that rich yellow yolk runs out in such a sexy way, it’s an absolute triumph to eat.
We were stuffed to the brim but the cakes looked so enticing and you simply can’t come to Koho and not have one of the homemade cakes. They’re delivered fresh every day by Joanna who has a company making all types of cakes and caters for weddings, parties and supplies cafes, you can contact her here. We decided to go for raspberry, lemon and white chocolate but we were being good and decided to share a slice and thank god we did, the slice was as big as a brick but so delicious. The fluffiest of sponges is filled with a really creamy and light butter cream which wasn’t at all sickly sweet as some can be, the sharpness of the fragrant raspberries really offset any possible sweetness. I accompanied my half with a delicious cappuccino.
Koho Coffee is definitely the place to go for breakfast, lunch, brunch and tea/coffee and cake. Using locally sourced ingredients which is such a rare occurrence these days (especially for a local place) Koho produces food of the highest quality and what I really liked about our visit was that one of the owners came and asked how things were and if we enjoyed our lunch, a really nice touch and of course, we absolutely did. I couldn’t have been more enthusiastic in my praise for Koho I was repeatedly telling this chap how much I couldn’t wait to move to Amersham so that I could have them on my doorstep much to my daughters embarrassment but that’s the effect this place has on you, we both left extremely satisfied and wonderfully full and very much looking forward to our next visit. I will forever sing Koho’s praises to anyone who is remotely interested in good honest food.
7 Nightingales Corner