Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Tupelo Coffeehouse & Roasting Co.

Location: 5700 Elvas Ave., Sacramento

Reviewed: February 21, 2007

Espresso: I was served a double of ~2oz. in a burnt orange ceramic cup with matching saucer. The shot was groud to order and tamped. The barista poured into a pair of shotglasses, which he used to transfer the espresso to the waiting, but apparently not preheated cup. This didn't help the crema, which was resultantly on the thin side. Nonetheless, it was a somewhat mottled, nicely-colored, medium-dark brown. The shot was medium-bodied with a buttery mouthfeel. There were hints of caramel and allspice, supported by a tinge of berry-like sweetness.

Atmosphere: Tupelo is a large shop in a small strip mall. The inside contains a roaster, several tables (including what appears to be a picnic table), and some integrated seating along a portion of one wall. Tract lighting is installed and seemed to be randomly blinking. This might be by some kind of design, because the employees didn't seem nonplused at this one bit; it should be noted that these were not the only lights installed. Jazz was playing quite loudly, but did not overwhelm one's senses. It works pretty well, overall.

Verdict: Not bad.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Mission Bakery & Cafe

Location: inside the student center at Santa Clara University, 500 El Camino Real, Santa Clara

Reviewed: February 18, 2007

Espresso: SCU as a whole recently switched their coffee accounts to Barefoot beans. This has resulted in quite the improvement since I attended a couple of years ago. Today, they were serving Redwood. The barista didn't seem to grind the shot to order, but she did give it a heavy tamp (on top of a very full portafilter). The shot was poured directly into a smallish (6oz?) paper cup. It had a nicely-coloured crema, which, although not thick per se, was pretty good given the wideness of the cup. It was thick and full-bodied and coated the tongue well. It contained just a tinge of honey-sweetness.

Atmosphere: Well, um, it's in the student center. Not much to comment on here.

Verdict: Even though they need some training, if this stuff had been there when I was in school, I wouldn't have needed to take the bar exam twice, because of all that time I wasted traveling away from campus for my coffee.

Friday, February 09, 2007

If it's not heresy, it's at least typical

The sentiment expressed in the first paragraph of this article is why I write these reviews.