A Quick Guide to NYC Coffee
I want to preface this with: I was only in New York for three days, so when I say this is a "quick coffee guide", believe me. It is. Even while I think we did a pretty good job in getting our espresso on, I know there are plenty of places left to discover. I guess that just means I have to go back. Bummmmmmer. Ok, but seriously. Coffee. What a glorious thing. Especially in the nippy New York chill. AMIRITE?
I'm slowly but surely learning to accept the fact that I am what most people consider a "coffee snob" (I mean, I make coffee as a part-time living..) -- which I'd just like to add is such an asshole label to put on someone, but I digress -- and while I realize there is a huge sect of society that doesn't know and may not actually care about bean-origins, roasts, notes or anything else that plays a factor in the delivery of a good cup of coffee, I've also come to accept that while I don't have to turn my nose up at anything less than what I like, or create this weird elitist thing around it, I also don't have to downplay my appreciation for the art and science of coffee. And before you go getting all agro about this while thing -- oh look, we've already moved on.
As soon as I touched down in New York the struggle began. You know, the internal war between the things I should want to do vs. the things I actually wanted to do and - thankfully - in the end the, "this is my trip, my story, my brand/blog and my adventure" won out and I internally high-fived the thing in me that is always searching for home & rest. The seeking out and discovery of the places were we can calm and balance in the midst of excitement - in the quick flashes and changes of scenery, people and location that is travel - will forever be my goal; if for no other reason than to be able to share them with you.
Long winded explanations aside, I present to you:
NEW YORK: a quick guide to great coffee in the city
Get caffeinated. Get centered and go explore.
#1 CULTURE ESPRESSO
72 W 38th St, New York, NY 10018
I will be giving this guy it's own little write up later down the line, but in short this was the best cup I got in New York. The aesthetic inside isn't quite my vibe, albeit cute, but there was no denying the delicious nature of this place. A block off Broadway Culture Espresso boasts the best cookies in NYC which according to reviews doesn't seem to be just talk. With minimal seating I wouldn't suggest this as a place to hunker down, but more a grab and go, or quick cookie nosh and walk type of joint. Milk Substitutes and rad employee vibes put this spot at the top of my list as soon as it touched my lips.
#2 NINTH STREET ESPRESSO
75 Ninth Ave, New York, NY 10011
Coming in strong at number two is Ninth Street Espresso in Chelsea Market. Quite honestly it took us a second to find it (it's directly in the middle of the market) and when we did both my friend and I were skeptical as to what our experience would be. The sign simply read, "Brewed Coffee -- Iced Coffee -- Espresso -- Espresso w/ Milk". Would it be bang for our buck? or a whole lot of minimalist aesthetic and an expensive cup of bitter espresso. The good news is, it was great! There isn't seating that I'm aware of but the baristas were quick and knowledgeable, had milk substitutions, and while cash only- which can be an issue if you aren't prepared- I'd definitely suggest 'em.
307 E 9th St, New York, NY 10003
Mud ranks three on aesthetic alone. The coffee is good, yes, but the place itself is fantastic. Brick walls, weird pictures on the walls, red colored string-lights and bar seating made this my favorite place to visit out of all the shops. The baristas were quick, kind and witty offering us a laugh or two and it only gets better with all day brunch, a beer & wine garden, and bike parking! They have a back patio, milk substitues and are open till midnight. Go get 'em tigers.
368 Graham Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211
number four, and only so because it's actually in Brooklyn, is Variety. I'll keep it short and sweet because I sheepishly feel like I'm selling out on the "in the city" aspect of this post but this place makes a good cup, has a nice, chill atmosphere, milk substitutions and as it's located in Williamsburg it's perfectly, as my friend would say, "Anything you hipster-folk could want."