What is disappearing missing from a lot of coffee shops is the counter.

Everywhere it is plastic or glass with a lot of sweet things around such as muffins, cakes, falpjacks or even paninis.

There is something about the (continental) style which isn’t right as yet.

The other thing: the service!

A good café place would need table service and not a queue with a tray and the potential situation to have it sliding and ending on the floor. This is what is lacking in the United Kingdom.

The entire spirit is missing, this is why the service is so impersonal.

In France for instance, you sit down, a waiter/waitress comes to greet you and take your drink order and sometimes recommends a cake or a sandwich. Generally, within 5 to 8 minutes it is brought to your table with no fuss or hassle.

The receipt is then brought to you as a bill after a meal.

Alternatively, you can have a coffee at the bar. The counter is usually made of wood and lead. Handmade by professionals. Each counter have a personnality and are usually made to order.

Of course, it is far more expensive than a rail with glass and plastic but the style of the counter makes the bar – it can be made of oak, walnut, copper, lead…etc.

Hopefully, in the near future these big coffee shops will invest in such things rather than over charging the customers for a basic cup of hot tea/coffee and a dry pain au chocolat.

To admire more wooden counter check THIS site.