Green Coffee Machine
Green Coffee Machine Part One: The Prom
The Longer Read Green Coffee Machine proves that sometimes it’s OK to buy things from the back of a van. The Green Coffee Machine operates from an Italian van on the Promenade. This review is part 1 because there’s a mothership operation near the railway station. That’s a pretty fine establishment too.
The Prom is a bit of a ‘good coffee’ desert, so the smart move on a sunny day is to get a coffee from Green Coffee Machine, something to eat from somewhere like Huffkins and camp out on one of the Prom’s benches. With a bit of luck the busking won’t be too loud and you can watch the world go by and people in the cafes not enjoying their coffee as much as you.
If you struggle to find the coffee van look for a large red umbrella, not far from Hotel Chocolat.
Flat white is £2.30, espresso £1.40. Coffee is organic, fair trade and rain forest alliance certified. They have their own blend: A medium to dark roast espresso blend of triple certified coffees from Ethiopia, Central America and Indonesia. Sweetness reminiscent of dark chocolate is complemented by citrus acidity.
You can score a few snacks from GCM itself, although the choice is a bit limited (it’s just a small van for goodness sake). Hence a bit of a low food score, but that’s not really the point.
The coffee is really quite good, it’s in our top half-dozen in Cheltenham. Service is pretty cheery and interest is added by the shirts (see picture).
The van is a Piaggio Ape. There’s a cute story about Piaggio motorbikes in the 60s and 70s. The Italian company’s Vespa motorbikes were a cool, cult item here and sold well. Vespa means ‘Wasp’ and so it seemed a natural option to sell the ‘Bee’, the next model. Unfortunately, the Italian for ‘Bee’ is ‘Ape’ and the Piaggio Ape never did sell so well.