No good coffee/espresso shops. Is it just me? - Page 2

Talk about your favorite cafes, local barista events, or plan your own get-together.
User avatar

Postby HB » Dec 24, 2017, 1:38 pm

sweaner wrote:I am seeing more and more very good shops.

In our area, there are still iffy cafes, but there's plenty of good ones too. The latter wasn't true 10 years ago.

Mbb wrote:...if you're not drinking straight coffee or espresso you're not drinking coffee, but a coffee drink.

Sure, and the same could be said for thousands of alcoholic beverages. While I don't add anything to coffee except as a masking agent, I don't judge those who routinely add sugar, milk, or whatever they want.
Dan Kehn

User avatar
Team HB

Postby drgary » Dec 24, 2017, 1:43 pm

Mbb wrote:But in my opinion if you're not drinking straight coffee or espresso you're not drinking coffee, but a coffee drink.

I've got my Olympia Express Maximatic ready to go to make myself and my wife a couple of coffee drinks, then. Nothing wrong with a good capp or two in the morning! :D

What I WOULD do for a good cup of coffee!

User avatar
Supporter ♡

Postby yakster » Dec 24, 2017, 2:16 pm

Finding coffee shops that prepare coffee the way you like it can be problematic. I've heard somewhere that the numbers of straight espresso drinkers that cafes serve (at least in the United States) is in the single digits, and nowadays I think that the numbers for black coffee are pretty low too. Using Yelp, your favorite mapping, app, etc. to find a good coffee shop will find something that has WiFi, serves good blended or milk drinks, or good pastries, maybe has plenty of power outlets and lets you hang out and study or work for hours. I seek the advice of fellow fans of quality focused coffee establishments, like here, but I also take some chances and have been pleasantly surprised that the numbers of good coffee shops are growing, and not limited to the larger metro areas but include some more surprising places as well, but there has to be some passion by the owners and baristas to serve good coffee to keep it going. One of my favorite coffee roasters opened a new downtown location and I've found that it's a great place to buy beans, but the customer service and the quality of the espresso and coffee is in question.

One of the trends in coffee is a return to batch coffee brewing, some of the more notable coffee advocates have driven home the fact that you can make better, more consistently good coffee using a dialed in batch brewer than you can with a hand pour. The challenge is how can you tell if a coffee shop has spent the time to set up a brew profile for the coffee on the batch brewer along with hold and cleaning processes to ensure great coffee or if they're just using a batch brewer without taking steps to ensure good coffee. I guess that may be an unintended consequence of the move towards batch brew in cafes, making it harder to find the good coffee spots. The hand pour used to signal that they cared about the coffee.

Finally, it's much easier to brew, and serve coffee that you like at home than in a cafe, given a learning curve, because you not only know what you like but you can make changes to and directly experience the effect of these changes.

LMWDP # 272

User avatar

Postby bluesman » Dec 24, 2017, 2:17 pm

drgary wrote:Portland has several decent espresso options, including Stumptown, but we're probably an exception.

I don't think so, Gary - we've found very good coffee all over the US - Seattle, Nashville, Louisville, Philly, Palm Beach, Palm Springs, Boston, Chicago, NY, LA, SF, Sioux Falls, Livingston MT, NOLA, Austin, Alexandria VA and countless places in between. God shots are rare, but very drinkable coffee abounds. I always try a shot before any other drink at a place new to me, and I'm often surprised at how good they are (even if not my favorite style). My wife prefers black brewed or pour-over, and she too finds good coffee in many places.

We research each area & try those places that sound "right". Sometimes they're not, but not infrequently they are. It just takes a little work to find them.

User avatar

Postby bluesman » Dec 24, 2017, 3:02 pm

HB wrote:Sure, and the same could be said for thousands of alcoholic beverages.

Absolutely!! And to those who criticize, I can only reply.....

"Corretto alla Sperss, per favore!"

Image +
Image = :D

User avatar

Postby redbone » Dec 24, 2017, 3:23 pm

Mbb wrote:Well, that's what I do. I buy and roast and drink mine as much as possible. Hell I look forward to my coffee in morning.

But I travel a bit. Planes, trains, automobiles.

In airports I will go out of my way to find anything but Starbucks. It's all bad...but Starbucks is the worst. All tastes burnt.

But...even at better small shops, it's still not "good" to me.

Starbucks does vary its coffee to at least geographical preferences. They quickly became known as Tarbucks in many urban areas in Canada and subsequently came out with two specific lighter roasts to compete with Canada largest coffee retailer which served a light to medium roast coffee. Funny thing is that the competing retailer in turn came out with a darker roast option.
Between order and chaos there is espresso.
Semper discens.

LMWDP #549

User avatar
Supporter ♡

Postby Almico » Dec 24, 2017, 4:18 pm

Mbb wrote:But in my opinion if you're not drinking straight coffee or espresso you're not drinking coffee, but a coffee drink.

Drinking coffee is for sissies. I mainline my brew.

User avatar

Postby bluesman » replying to Almico » Dec 24, 2017, 4:45 pm

Now you've opened a whole new vein for discussion, Alan!


User avatar
Supporter ♡

Postby Almico » replying to bluesman » Dec 24, 2017, 8:08 pm



Postby emjen » Jan 13, 2018, 11:54 am

I find that the small, local places are the best. Dark Matter coffee (Chicago) is great!