UrbanFigaro Senior Member Joined: 11 Jul 2004 Posts: 76 Location: New York, NY Expertise: Professional
Espresso: SGL Big Bar Drip: Chemex, Melitta Clarity Roaster: Gimme Coffee, Intelligentsia
Posted Sat Nov 26, 2005, 10:58pm Subject: New York City: Blue Spoon Coffee Company
I heard on eGullet that an interesting new coffee shop had opened in lower Manhattan, and since it's just around the corner from Korin (easily the finest purveyor of Japanese knives in the US) I had to check it out. Oh, who am I kidding... I've trekked out to Brooklyn just to ogle the Mirage at Gimme, and I've been known to go 50 blocks out of my way for my morning coffee if I wake up early enough.
Blue Spoon Coffee Company is a brand new shop, run by an extremely ambitious (and ever so lovely) young woman, Heather. It's only been open a few weeks, and it doesn't seem to have been designed around the bean, so to speak, but it shows great potential. The most exciting part to me is that she is using Intelligentsia coffee! (You can buy beans from her, too.) As far as I know, this is the first time Intelligentsia has been brewed and sold here in Manhattan, and I couldn't be happier about it.
How's the coffee, you ask? Somewhere between good and great, which puts Blue Spoon well above all but a handful of cafes in New York. The drip is exactly what I expect from Intelligentsia - complex and full-bodied, with bright and distinct fruit and nut notes. The espresso (Black Cat, natch) was really good. Different from the last time I had Black Cat in Chicago, but they've surely tweaked the blend since then, so that could have something to do with it. It was extremely smooth, a touch of dark sweetness, some chocolate, really velvety and rich. Heather trained with Intelligentsia, and it shows. All the steps were there, and everything was efficiently executed. She didn't seem completely comfortable behind the machine, but I'm sure that will come with time.
If you're in the city, it's definitely worth a trip down to Blue Spoon. It's conveniently located at 76 Chambers Street between Broadway and Church, accessible by the A,C,E,1,2,3,4,5,6,9, and R subway lines.
nyc_crema Senior Member Joined: 13 Oct 2004 Posts: 1,622 Location: New York City Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: Alexia (2010), Silvia (2004) Grinder: Mazzer Mini (2004)
Posted Thu Jan 5, 2006, 4:04pm Subject: Re: New York City: Blue Spoon Coffee Company
I went there and it's awesome. Absolutely nothing to complain about. I had a double espresso, served in a Intelligenstia demitasse, by the owner who was super friendly. Oddly, the double made me really hyper (not usual). Anyways, the cafe is really cool and it is a warm, refreshing change to Chambers Street. Too bad it's like a 10 minute walk from work, because I'd go in there before work, during work, and after work.
This place is really good and should be on every coffee geek's list when traveling to Manhattan. Its in the center of downtown Manhattan, so all you tourists will be able to see all the cool stuff there. City Hall is like 200 feet away and the Brooklyn Bridge is behind City Hall. The Woolworth Building is around the block as well as St. Pauls Church (pre-Revolution Building). Further more, you're a 5 minute walk from Wall Street.
caferacer Senior Member Joined: 22 Mar 2004 Posts: 101 Location: NYC Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: Expobar Pulser Grinder: Rocky
Posted Thu Jan 12, 2006, 7:44pm Subject: Re: New York City: Blue Spoon Coffee Company
Ok, I'll admit it, I'm a lazy Starbuck's drinker but I made the walk up to Chambers Street today from Wall Street because I've never had Black Cat and I really want to broaden my appreciation for real espresso. Everything said about Blue Spoon so far is true: beautiful store, crappy block, and Heather has the freshed faced enthusiasm and passion for technique that is unrivaled almost anywhere in NYC. The Black Cat double was a treasure and until a week ago I would have said it was the best shot I had ever had. But God lives on Lorimer Street in Brooklyn and I went back to Gimme tonight for the third time in a week. It is difficult for me to describe. Words like buttery, rich, caramelly, etc. all seem affected coming from a neophyte palate like mine, but...everything I said about the blend, atmosphere and passion at Blue Spoon goes double at Gimme. I swear, I can't stop thinking about it.
Having said that, I walked past no less than five Starbucks (up Broadway then back down W B'way and Church St.) to get to Blue Spoon and I will do it again tomorrow. I encourage others who may live or work in the Financial District or Tribeca to support this business. If we fail to support the little guys we'll be doomed to poor coffee forever and worse, will have no right to complain. And complaining is fun.
GOd sure does live in 11211. I was thinking the other day how I like Blue Spoon serves regular doubles, while Gimme serves ONLY triple ristrettos. That's the only bad thing I could say about Gimme; obviously this is nothing bad at all! The espresso, at both places, are so good that I wish I could drink 3 shots, rather than 4 sips in one shot. That said, I sometimes wish Gimme had regular shots so I could drink another sip or two.
Of course, this is the only bad thing I could say =)
Posted Tue Jan 31, 2006, 11:21am Subject: Re: New York City: Blue Spoon Coffee Company
Hey thanks for the heads up, I'll have to check it out. I'm especially happy about their selling whole beans -- I just got my first bag of Black Cat shipped yesterday by chance. Good stuff. I hate to pay for shipping on a regular basis though since it amounts to a 50% price markup so I'm delighted to hear they've got a local retailer.
Elephant & Castle is a great brunch spot with good coffee -- didn't know it was Intelligentsia.
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