The Best Coffee in New York
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In the 1800s, around Water, Wall, and Front Streets was New York's coffee district. The city brought in more coffee beans than any other port in the world. Most Americans got their coffee green, roasting and grinding the beans at home. Tontine's Coffee House, at Wall and Water, was built in 1792. That's where, on the second floor, the New York Stock Exchange had its beginnings. Downtown Manhattan and Brooklyn have once again become coffee districts, easily proven as we sip through the city's best wakey juice.
‣ Blue Bird Coffee Shop, 72 E. 1st [1st/2nd Aves.] 212.260.1897, serves Counter Culture Coffee and preps with care. Too small a place for lingering long.
‣ San Francisco's Blue Bottle Coffee now has four locations in NY. Delicious, expensive, and the New Orleans Iced Coffee is pretty great.
‣ The coffee we've had from Brooklyn Roasting Company in DUMBO has been notable for its balance—it's perfect. We'd drink it any day, anywhere.
‣ Four locations for Cafe Grumpy, which roasts its carefully sourced beans in Greenpoint. Try the Kenyan Gatomboya.
‣ Gimme! Coffee, with two locations in Brooklyn, one in Manhattan, has terrific coffee, skilled and friendly baristas.
‣ Park Slope is lucky to have Gorilla Coffee, 97 5th [Prospect Pl./Baltic] 718.230.3244; if it isn't on your daily route, Whole Foods sells their beans.
‣ Jack's, 138 W. 10th [Waverly/Greenwich Ave.] and 222 Front [Beekman/Peck], has made a name for itself by patenting their own brewing process: they stir during the brewing, which yields great depth of flavor without bitterness.
‣ Since 2003, Joe has been raising NY's coffee game. Plus, their selection of muffins, doughnuts, and other carbs is unsurpassed. Lots of classes in brewing, milk steaming, and espresso to raise your home game.
‣ Kaffe 1668, with two Greenwich Street locations (appropriate since it was opened by Swedish twin brothers), has a stripped-down Scandinavian aesthetic but no pulled punches where it counts. The 1668 refers to the year that, it is said, more New Yorkers began drinking coffee with breakfast than beer.
‣ Philly's La Colombe Torrefaction now has three locations (Tribeca, Noho, and Soho). Like most things Philly—underrated, over-delivers.
‣ Even if you don't like cappuccinos, order one (ignore the sign that calls it espresso with milk). You're welcome. Also, anything else from 9th Street Espresso. Three locations.
‣ Everything old is pneumatic again, with tubes playing a conducive role in delivering green beans to roaster. That's the Roasting Plant story and they're sticking to it. And they should: there's superbly fresh coffee waiting for you at their two locations, 81 Orchard [Broome/Grand] and 75 Greenwich Ave. [7th Ave.]
‣ Portland, Oregon's Stumptown Coffee Roasters has become the standard by which all other coffees are measured. Yes, their coffee devotion is frankly insane, but you can't argue with the results. Have it at the Ace Hotel, Broadway and 29th or at Cobble Hill's Cafe Pedlar.
‣ The Aussies weigh in with Toby's Estate, the first U.S. outpost of the popular boutique roastery—it's in Williamsburg, of course.
More: Gotta love Popchartlab's Compendious Coffee Chart… Did we miss a great cup? Let us know in the comments section of our blog.
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