My Favourites heart

My Favourites

Save your favourites with a single click and you’ll never forget a brilliant Muddy recommendation.


Get the inside line on what’s unique, special and new near you, straight to your inbox across 25 counties

Back to Cafes

5 best coffee shops (off the beaten track)

Fancy an adventure? Check out our 5 favourite rural coffee shops in Herts & Beds

Living in the sticks absolutely does not mean lowering your coffee shop standards. Next time you could murder a Macchiato, or fancy something a bit different for your next coffee date, why not head off the beaten track to one of these hidden gems. Here are our top 5 rural coffee shops in Herts and Beds.

The Coach House Kitchen, Hatfield House

LOCAL TIP – you can get in to the Stable Yard area of Hatfield house (complete with fab shops and a v cool café) without paying to enter the house or gardens. Even better news is that the modern and spacious Coach House Kitchen does great flat whites, hearty breakfast, lunch and dinner options, and tempting cakes. How about a wander round the extensive gardens (dogs welcome) before a coffee pitstop and a ‘quick’ mooch round the shops? Not a bad morning…

The Hub, Redbourn

Although initially created for the lycra clad cycling fanatics drawn to the village’s Bike Loft shop, the Hub is a cool coffee destination in its own right. This cosy space is perfect for an intimate catch up or a quiet moment with your favourite spring read. The Hub is also super-eco-friendly – only recyclable coffee cups allowed – so you can grab a guilt-free Mocha on the go.

Woodyard Coffee Shop, Luton Hoo

Luckily for us, the super-luxe Luton Hoo Estate is not just accessible to the hotel’s chic clientele. Next time you fancy an interesting excursion, why not roll up the drive (like you own the place), before taking a side track to the Woodyard Coffee Shop. This awesome little establishment offers great value breakfasts and lunches, and of course awesome coffee. WARNING – it is only open Monday to Friday, 9am until 4pm. Perfect for a post-school-run catch up, we say.

The Potting Shed, Sandridge

I stumbled upon this café when  popping into the farm shop for a few delightfully local items (as you do!)… And what a lovely surprise it was – spacious enough for lots of noisy kids or family, and with cute, contemporary styling, great coffees and loads of brunch and lunch options. You have to walk through the Garden Centre and Farm Shop to get to it, making this a brilliant – if potentially expensive – outing.

The Barn, Cardington

The Barn at Cardington is another café/farm shop gauntlet situation. Grab a latte and peruse what’s on offer in the shop, deli and butchers at this seriously gourmet, but non-profit, venture. The meat on sale is top notch and ethically sourced, with super-high welfare standards and easily traceable provenance. In fact the butchers shop won Best Independent Butcher in Bedfordshire at the Bedfordshire Food and Drink Awards last year. We know where we’re heading for our next Sunday joint…


Find more ideas here


5 comments on “5 best coffee shops (off the beaten track)”

  • Tess Sharman March 11, 2020

    You must check out my sisters rural cafe, open at weekends.
    The Garden Gate’ Oughton Head Farm, Pirton Road, Hitchin. SG5 2EU.
    Designed for walkers and cyclists, dogs are welcome.
    Cars by appointment.
    Groups and parties catered for.
    Fabulous cakes.
    Fabulous walks there also.

  • Geraldine Hogan March 11, 2020

    I have heard some great reviews about this hidden gem!
    Definitely on my list to visit!

  • Anna March 11, 2020

    The Cafe and restaurant at Hatfield House is a huge and very noisy disappointment. Forget trying to speak to you friends, the acoustics are appalling. It is simply very uncomfortable unless you sit outside.

  • Esther Clark March 11, 2020

    100% agree with BOTH comments. Hatfield Barn is awful but a walk around Oughton Head and coffee and cake at the Garden Gate is a real treat (and I’m not related/even a friend!)

  • Onedrew March 11, 2020

    Went to Hatfield House stable yard cafe. Quiet today. Great sausage roll. Coffee tasted OK but it came out of a robot not the real thing as per the Hub, George Street Zcsnteen etc


Tell us what you think

Your email address will not be published.

* Required
* Required

Little Black Book

The Little Black Book

Our A-Z of the grooviest local businesses to help make your life easier

View the businesses
Back Home

The Urban Guide to the Countryside - Herts & Beds

Reader Treats Just For You!