I love traveling: the thrill of the airplane, the wonder of new places, the joy of meeting new people. I’ve been to the East Coast a couple times in the last couple years, however, and so I kinda knew what I was getting in to when I was offered the opportunity to travel this weekend. Although excited to spend time with people I love, a fact kept nagging the back of my mind. A fact I knew, but didn’t want to say. A fact that every coffee snob this side of the Mississippi can relate to:
THERE IS NO GOOD COFFEE IN THE EAST COAST!
Ahem. That is to say, the closest thing you can find to coffee resides in Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks. As for the latter, you’ve had your say. As for the former…well just think McDonald’s focused on breakfast. I don’t think anyone in Idaho can completely understand the fascination much of the United States has with DD, but we sure can understand their lack of quality coffee.
Now that I’ve got that on the table, allow me to offer an exception.
Think Coffee uses fair trade coffee that’s a dark roast, a smooth taste, and a good environment. I found the one on Mercer street using nothing but my feet and my iPhone. And man am I glad I did.
The baristas are nice enough, while not completely being amiable. The place itself is a rustic environment (think chipped wood, unpainted pillars, and brick walls) and yet at the same time has a degree of elegance (curtains, couches, small library.) Plus, not only do they serve good coffee, they offer an assortment of beer and wine to choose from.
Like I said, the coffee is a dark roast, yet smooth at the same time. Think Starbucks mixed with Dawson’s (although I hate saying those two in the same sentence, let alone relating them.) I got a 16oz triple shot caramel breve. I can’t really taste the caramel (did he forget to put it in?) and the shots seem a little weak (not quite what I’d expect for three in a medium cup) but all the same, it tastes good. It’s full bodied, earthy (probably because of the roast) and has a clean finish. Plus, they served it with coffee art (an unexpected plus.)
The environment is awesome, to be honest. 20-somethings abound, as do Macbooks and iPhones, along with hip clothing and college homework. The place is packed (I couldn’t find an outlet for my compy) and the music is good, the Led Zeppelin barely recognizable due to the hordes of people chatting. Talking about life, work, love, anything. This is the place people come to hang, that much is clear.
I like this place. Next time I’m in Manhattan, I’ll stop by no questions asked. I enjoy the taste, the place, and the even the haste of this New York coffee shop.
The Coffee Guy