Starbucks is coming to Caledonian Road – but independent rival insists: ‘They don’t frighten me’

PUBLISHED: 07:55 02 August 2017 | UPDATED: 08:21 02 August 2017

'Starbucks doesn't frighten me.' Metin Gok, owner of Kafeteryam sandwich bar in Caledonian Road. Picture: James Morris

'Starbucks doesn't frighten me.' Metin Gok, owner of Kafeteryam sandwich bar in Caledonian Road. Picture: James Morris


The chain store takeover of Caledonian Road continues. Coffee giant Starbucks has confirmed it will open a new shop across the road from Caledonian Road Tube station this month.

Starbucks is opening in the vacant unit next to Nisa in Caledonian Road. Picture: James MorrisStarbucks is opening in the vacant unit next to Nisa in Caledonian Road. Picture: James Morris

It’s a sign of the continued gentrification of the Cally’s northern end. In recent years, Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Costa have all opened around the Underground station.

Metin Gok is owner of the independent Kafeteryam sandwich bar next to the station exit. With Starbucks opening directly across the road, and Costa two doors down, he is now in competition with multinational giants.

But he is ready for the fight.

“I don’t feel it will affect me,” he told the Gazette. “We do coffee, they do coffee. But we have a different clientele compared with all the chains around here. We specialise in coffee but also custom-made sandwiches. It’s not a place where you grab something off the shelf. We have a personal touch.

“I have been here since 2009, and I have seen all the chain businesses – Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Costa, Nisa and now Starbucks – come in. So it doesn’t frighten me at all. Even if another chain came in after Starbucks, I wouldn’t worry.

“In any case, I’ve always believed in the fact that competition among businesses is healthy.”

Metin even suggested chain stores are a welcome addition to the Cally.

“Since 2009, Caledonian Road has developed in many areas,” he said. “Not just with shops but also things like student accommodation. It’s a positive. Compare it now to what it was in 2009. It was a ghost town. No one was about.”

Starbucks could not give an opening date for the shop, which is nearly fitted out.

A spokesperson said: “We are excited to confirm that we will be opening a new Starbucks store on Caledonian Road in August – directly across from Caledonian Road Tube station – so we are looking forward to bringing our great coffee to local residents and those travelling through.

“Together with our licensed partner, Arabica Coffee, the new store will create 15 new job opportunities. We’ll be kicking off on opening day with live music, coffee tastings and goody bags for the first 100 customers.”

Latest Islington News Stories

Yesterday, 20:00

Elderly people fought to save a Highbury day centre from closure at a heated full council meeting last night, during which the mayor of Islington told the borough’s housing boss to “shut up”.

Yesterday, 17:13

Cops have made two arrests in connection with the fatal stabbing of a 25-year-old man in Tufnell Park on Tuesday.

Yesterday, 15:21

A cyclist who was hit by a car in St John Street on Wednesday morning has died, police have confirmed.

Yesterday, 14:45

Open House London takes place this weekend and an iconic building in Holloway built as a haven for torture survivors is throwing open its doors.

Yesterday, 10:08

An architect has slammed “petty” Islington planners who have again told him to demolish his multi-award winning block in Clerkenwell.

Yesterday, 08:27

Sheltered housing tenants in Islington fear planned cutbacks to the service could see people left to die in their flats.

Two people were injured after a gunman opened fire in Essex Road last night.

Thu, 13:04

Wireless Festival chiefs face a battle to stay in Finsbury Park after Haringey Council announced a licence review will take place next month.


Fostering older teenagers means giving them the skills for life as an adult. Here, a supportive lodgings carer with Islington Council and young adult who has left care share their stories

Newsletter Sign Up

Islington Gazette twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now