As a teenager I loved going to Starbucks and getting a frappuccino whenever I was abroad, as Isael is one of the few Western countries with no Startbucks (it failed there quite miserably). Today, as a grown up woman, I still find some comfort in sitting at one of their locations, but I’m no longer a big fan of frappuccinos, and you’ll probably agree that there are better places to get a good cup of coffee.
Truth be told, to most coffee lovers who have refined their palate outside of the states, the American coffee usually tastes pretty bad. It’s at times too weak, often too acidic, and sometimes just burnt. For someone like me, who has acquired their coffee preferences in Israel, a country which prefers its coffee rich and more on the bitter side, I usually find the coffee in New York sour.
In the last few years New York has really evolved when it comes to coffee culture. New companies decided to specialize in good brews of coffee, instead of just “drinks”, and numerous coffee shops opened their doors in various locations across the city. Among these companies you can find Birch Coffee, Think Coffee, Toby’s Estate Coffee, Stumptown Coffee Roasters, La Colombe, and many more. These cafes aren’t as big as Starbucks (or Pret a Manger or The Bean), they are more “boutique”, and try to stay more focused when it comes to the drinks they serve. I have to admit I still find that some of them use very acidic brews (Think coffee especially), but at least these places have stronger coffee than the big chains.
Coffee is obviously a matter of taste, and god knows I’m very particular (about my coffee, but also generally speaking), so you should probably go try and see which one works best for you. One of my favorites is probably Toby Estate’s coffee, with the cutest location in Williamsburg.
More on cute cafes to come.