Thursday, November 18, 2004

Southbay Coffee Tour

Spent the day off touring some of the top coffee locations listed on CoffeeGeek for the Southbay region. I was on my way to Palo Alto to meet with friends so I headed south on a four stop tour.

The first stop found me at Barefoot Coffee Roasters. These folks are highly active on CG and have recently held a barista jam for the Southbay. I was surprised to find a shop with such atmosphere tucked away in a shopping center but there it was.

The first drink of the day was a dbl macc, which was served in a 5-6oz cup with a little butter cookie on the side (nice touch). Their space was inviting and comfortable and the barista seemed confident with her art. With the Probat on in the back, I was reminded of Zoka Coffee and Tea in Seattle where the roasting was an intimate part of the cafe experience.


Feeling enthusiastic, I charged down Stevens Creek Blvd to the next cafe on my list, Coffee Society. Located in The Oaks mall this similarly tucked away shop was almost all glass on the exterior so you could see people milling about drinking coffee inside.



I had one of those slightly awkward ordering experiences where the guy immediately behind the counter was obviously new ("what size espresso would you like") but we've all been there. My single shot was served in a demi-tasse at about 3 oz.


Next stop was difficult to find. I had a little map but the address was somewhat difficult as the numbers above the adjacent buildings were out of sequence. However my search was rewarded by the two guys at Global Blends (who apparently don't have a website). I first ordered a single shot which was served at about an ounce and a half in the little brown demi-tasse. The darkness and thickness of the crema was so enticing but the cup was so hot! Someone should have been filming my pained attempts to get at the shot over the scalding rim of the cup. Their space is spartan but nice. The next customers in line ordered some gigantic plastic cupped sugar bombs, so I waited to order a dbl macc, this time asking that my lips be spared. Laughs all around. These guys offer several espressos, I'm assuming at different times throughout the day, and I got a half pound of their current selection Espresso Abruzzo from The Supreme Bean.


Last stop for the night was in Palo Alto, home of Coupa Cafe. I was told earlier that this shop deals exclusively in Venezuelan beans, but I was very excited to see several grinders lined up next to their machine.



The first shot was of what I believe was called the Coupa blend? (Right most grinder) and my 3 oz single was promisingly different. After dinner, I went back to sample not only more coffee, but also some excellent chocolate bon-bons from the Chuao Chocolatier in San Diego, Ca. Who use only, you guessed it, Venezuelan chocolate. This extravagance was paired with a double shot of the Azatlita estate bean (I think the second from the left) which was served very long. About 5-6oz. Neat to see a place so focused on a single origin, and the atmosphere was pleasant and comfortable. I can also highly recommend the chocolates. Between three of us, we polished off an entire box. They're small, really.

A whirlwind tour of shots and sugar and I can't wait to go back.

Oh, and bccy took a turn with the Giant!

2 Comments:

Blogger fortune said...

thanks for the link steve and the kind mentions!

1:22 PM  
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3:45 AM  

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