Archive | December, 2012

dubsea-21

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Dubsea

Posted on 21 December 2012 by mattbaker

9910 8th Avenue Southwest  Seattle, WA 98106

9910 8th Avenue Southwest Seattle, WA 98106

Review -

Dubsea is a calm lagoon in a sea of uncertainty. White Center has long been considered a shady and dangerous part of Seattle, and lacked a lot of the social outlets that other parts of Seattle offer. Slowly people are getting hip that all the gentrified neighborhoods are lame and the rugged areas are the spots that actually have a little personality. Dubsea is a coffee shop that embodies not only the grit of White Center, but the coffee quality that Seattle has come to expect. With a pristine Synesso and a Stumptown bean, Dubsea brings it. A cool open layout with interesting bar stools, play area for the kids and lot’s of light make it a decent spot to sit and enjoy you coffee. They coffee is top notch and worth stopping in if you find yourself on the southend of Seattle. The only downfall for this place is that it closes at 4:30 so be sure to plan ahead.

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Specialities:

+ Stumptown
+ Synesso
+ White Center

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Calico

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Calico Coffee

Posted on 01 December 2012 by mattbaker

316 Bay St
Thunder Bay, ON P7B 1S1

Review -

Calico seems to be the cool spot where the locals hang. There are three coffee shops in Thunder Bay and they are all located a block from each other. I think Calico is the best of the three. In a dark basement like space, Calico rocks a Elektra machine and makes a decent cup. It is nothing to write home about, but it certainly will do the trick. Cool wooden booths are a long the wall if you want to bury your face and work, or have an intimate conversation. They have snacks, cute barista’s and decent art on the wall. If you are traveling in Ontario, this might be a lagoon in the dessert of nothingness. Check it out.

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+ Coffee
+ Interesting people
+ Basement

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beanfiend

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Bean Fiend

Posted on 01 December 2012 by mattbaker

194 Algoma Street South
Thunder Bay, ON P7B 3C1

Review -

I am not one to judge a place on it’s name a lone, because if I did I would have never gone to this place. Name aside, the Bean Fiend is a friendly little shop with snacks, food and a decent place to study. They have a Simonelli machine and use Oso Negro beans from British Columbia. The barista was very nice, but really sucked at making coffee. Our coffee was to hot, burnt and not the sizes we asked. The coffee tasted ok, but it was long after the flavor had dissolved that we could actually drink it. Stick to drip or snacks at this place.

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Specialities:

+ Coffee
+ Snacks
+ Chatty people

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greatnorthwest

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The Great Northwest Coffee Company Inc

Posted on 01 December 2012 by mattbaker

250 Algoma St S
Thunder Bay, ON P7B 3C2

Review -

This came highly recommended from a roaster I met in town and I was very excited about it. It shares a space with a computer store and has maybe a total of 6 seats which 1 of the seats is always occupied by the owner. They roast their own beans which I thought would be great, but it kind of let me down. They use a La Cimbali machine which I was not familiar with and the combination of the roast, machine and barista provided a very average cup. It is a funky spot to hang and chat people up and I do like the fact the money is going right to the guy making your drink, but I don’t think this is the best.

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Specialities:

+ Coffee
+ Computers
+ Roasting

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Extracto

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Extracto

Posted on 01 December 2012 by mattbaker

1465 Northeast Prescott Street
Portland, OR

Review -

Another drive by whim. Extracto is a interesting spot located in a sort of strip mall string of shops with drum stores and a smell store. They have a really interesting space with a garage door that opens into a small room highlighted with a huge painting of a monkey riding a dragon. They have a great Synnesso machine and a pour over station with 5 or 6 funnels awaiting your order. They have yummy treats and great coffee. All the customers hanging out were men, but I don’t think it is mandatory to do work there. A cool spot of the beaten path.

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+ Coffee
+ Cold Water
+ Pour Over

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Sterling

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Sterling Coffee Roasters

Posted on 01 December 2012 by mattbaker

417 NW 21st Ave
Portland, OR 97210

Review -

This place rocks on multiple levels. A small spot in Northwest portland and when I say “small,” I mean “SMALL.” Having maybe 5 tables and can seat probably 12 this plays has people coming and going all day. A great decor, with coffee plants decorating each table, it makes sense why this place is blowing up. The owners are your barista’s and they welcome you with their hipster vintage suits and smiles. Their roast is delicious and their espresso is made on a single group Synnesso machine (which I had not seen.) The price was a little high for my drink, but worth it because they made the shit out of my coffee. The Nicaragua blend was fantastic with a lot of flavor and very smooth. They roast well, barista well and decorate great. This is a “Must Stop” in Portland.

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Specialities:

+ Coffee
+ Decor
+ The bomb shit!

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Boise

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Crux Coffee

Posted on 01 December 2012 by mattbaker

1022 W Main St
Boise, ID 83702

Review -

Crux flat out rocks it. I love this place. It has everything I want in a coffee shop. Great art, lots of space, a stage for shows, lot’s of light, beer, a pool table and above all else amazing coffee. They use a Stumptown bean on a La Marzocco. It seemed to be pretty empty. Maybe Boise has not caught on to the quality they have right in front of them. I just hope this place can survive. It is great. They have a special drink where you drop two shots of espresso into a porter beer. I did not have it, but apparently it is the tasty of the taste. A hipster flip. Well worth the stop when you are driving through Boise.

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Specialities:

+ Coffee
+ Beer
+ Pool

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Rutamaya

Ruta Maya

Posted on 01 December 2012 by mattbaker

3600 Presidential Blvd.
Austin, TX 78719

Review -

Normally at airports the only espresso you can get is at Starbucks. I was so excited to walk past Ruta Maya in one of the terminals. I don’t have off hand where it is located, but I think it is between gates 6 and 7. Aside from a Mexican art gift shop stocked full of colorful day of the dead souvenirs, Ruta Maya rocks a great cup. A La Marzocco machine and a great bean gives you some great flavor to put in your mouth before you get on your flight or to welcome you to Austin. The have some decent tea also if you want to save your palette for downtown Austin. This is some of the best coffee I have ever had at an airport. Keep up the great work!

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+ Coffee
+ Mexican Art
+ Airport

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JPs

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JP’S

Posted on 01 December 2012 by mattbaker

2803 San Jacinto Boulevard
Austin, TX 78705

Review -

This was Yelp’s and Urbanspoon’s highest rated shop in Austin and it was the lowest rated of all the places I visited in most of Texas. Smack in the middle of frat row JPS sits. It is littered with terrible art and studying college kids who look like the stumbled out from a giant orgy and plopped down to study. The burnt orange colors they were all wearing did not help my opinion of the situation either. JPS does have a La Marzocco, but did not seem to know how to maximize it. The coffee was too hot, burnt and not very good. They did not have 8 o drinks and charged me $4.00 for a 12 oz latte they were to fill only 8 oz. They filled it to the top of the 12 oz size with a beautiful rosetta, but the damage had been done. Not sure how you can not make the drink we just talked about at length 60 seconds before. Maybe they were to busy focusing on one of the multiple TV’s they have playing everything from MTV to college football games. did not even have a cup for. They have do have beer and if I were you I would not try the coffee, I would try and figure out where the next orgy is happening.

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+ Coffee
+ People in sweats
+ TV

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caffemedici

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Cafe Medici

Posted on 01 December 2012 by mattbaker

200 Congress Ave
Austin, TX 78701

Review -

It took me 15 minutes driving around downtown Austin just to find a parking spot to go to this place, but it was well worth it. It is a great layout, with high ceilings and a piano in the corner. It looks like a shop straight of Seattle. It was a little confusing on where to order with no signage and employees in two different locations in the shop. Apparently you order at another location then where the machines are. The spot that holds the espresso machines is an island located in the middle of the shop. They rock two stylish red La Marzocco’s. Apparently they don’t do 8 oz latte’s, but only 8 oz cappuccino’s, which was a little annoying, but whatever you call the drink they made me, it was delicious. It was smooth, light and packed with lot’s of tasty flavor. The best place I found in Austin and a must stop if you enjoy the finer things of Austin.

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+ Coffee
+ Snacks
+ Austin

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