Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Mission City Coffee Roasting

Location: 2221 The Alameda, Santa Clara

There is another location (not reviewed) at 4300 Great America Parkway, Santa Clara

Reviewed: January 17, 2006

Espresso: My single shot was served in a ~3oz cup, although it was the proper ~1oz volume. However, there was no crema whatsoever; neither was there much taste.

Atmosphere: Mission City is a large shop near Santa Clara University. It is laid out in the corner of a building, and so the 'dining area' is somewhat L-shaped. There are brick walls, local artists' work, and random paint spatters on the concrete floor (Jackson Pollock-esque?).

Verdict: It is amazing to me how the coffee can be so stale at a place that roasts its own.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Java Junction

Location: 4075 Evergreen Village Square, Suite #150, San Jose.

There are two other locations (not reviewed) in Santa Cruz.

Reviewed: January 8, 2006

Espresso: My single was served in a very cool glass cup with a wire-like handle. The volume was on the high side, although I spoke with a gentleman who I assumed to be the owner, and he said he would set the superauto machine to a lesser volume. The crema was medium-to-pale and thin, although, suprisingly, it did not dissipate rapidly. The shot was mellow and thin-bodied (the latter probably due to the long shot), with a smoky dark-roast taste predominate in the cup. The barista (the aforementioned presumed owner) preheated the cup and tamped fairly hard, although the grinds were sitting in the doser (we discussed that as well).

Atmosphere: JJ is a quite small location. The physical space consists of an oblong rectangular area (wide, as opposed to deep) with a high open ceiling. The walls are painted various tones from yellow to orange (darker shades), and the front of the counter is a natural wood. There are but few tables inside, due to the size of the space; those that are there match the counters, excepting that the tables (oddly enough, not rounded) are much more highly polished. There are a couple of armchairs in one corner, and a few tables outside as well.

It is of note here that the Square in which JJ is located is a pedestrian-friendly environment, and there is a park directly across from the shop.

Verdict: Ok, although not great espresso, which may be improved if the owner makes the changes that we discussed.