Saturday, July 26, 2008

   from AndyS

Coffee Labs Roasters, Tarrytown NY

ceramic mascot at coffee labs roasters

My initial assumption was that the "Lab" in Coffee Labs Roasters referred to some sort of roasting laboratory. And apparently it does. But there's a double meaning: the owners love dogs, particularly chocolate labs. So they run the first dog friendly cafe I've ever seen. Since I frequently travel with my dog, Paris, I was psyched to visit this place.

So I walked in, dog in tow. There were a couple of ceramic Labs guarding the place (that's one in the picture above). After greeting them and a few friendly customers, Paris did what he does best, falling asleep right on the floor:

zzzzzzzzzzzzz...

Going up to the counter, I ordered an espresso from a barista whom I eventually find out is named Maddy. The baristas on duty were Jess, Will, and Maddy:

the crew at coffee labs

I suppose that at any committed coffee shop, a customer ordering straight espresso gets the attention of a serious barista. It says, "I appreciate COFFEE," not just flavored milk shakes!" Maddy appeared to prepare my double espresso with extra care, and served it in a ceramic cup. She even offered me a small spoon to stir with. These people WERE committed!

The espresso was GOOD, and not only that, it had the distinctive soulful funk of high-quality Sumatran beans. Maddy confirmed that, and I could tell she appreciated the comment. I'm only speculating, but it must be satisfying to have customers really taste what you're serving.

I struck up a conversation with Jess, and she sensed my enthusiasm about the coffee. She asked me if I wanted to try their decaf espresso. Now decaf is normally something I never order, but I said sure, I'd love to taste it. It was good, too, although characteristically lacking the flavor punch of a regular coffee. So Jess said, "let me pull you our regular espresso blend the way I like it," and she proceeded to tweek her technique on the big (semiauto!) GB5 to get a slooooooow, drip...drip...drip ristretto from the bottomless pf.

jess works the GB5

This one was terrific. It had all the Sumatra flavor I love, but with bigger body and juicier mouthfeel. It was a joy to drink such quality coffee on the road.

Well done, Coffee Labs!

jess hoists a demitasse

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

   from Nick

The 2008 WBC Champion... EXPOSED!!!

"I must be honest, things have changed around the apartment since getting back from Copenhagen. I wish I could say that Stephen hasn’t let success go to his head and is the same old lovable guy - but this simply isn’t the case."

More exposé here.

So sad.

Friday, July 18, 2008

   from Nick

More big coffee news

This is what people SHOULD be talking about this week!!!

Another example of how the blogosphere is generally a pretty dumb place (present company included).