Sunday, June 17, 2007

Caffe Roma

Location: 526 Columbus Ave., San Francisco

Reviewed: June 17, 2007

Espresso: My single was served around the proper volume, being just barely over 1oz. It was served half-up in a ~2oz. ceramic cup with matching saucer. The crema looked promising, being a darker brown color overall, with some slightly lighter colors mixed in sporadically. Although it looked as good as it did, the crema layer was very thin and began to dissipate upon my first sip. In the cup was a fairly complicated mixture of caramel-sweetness and cinnamon-spiciness, finishing with hints of dark chocolate. Fairly classic and fairly nice.

Atmosphere: Caffe Roma is a large shop with entrances on two sides. It is well-lit and clean inside. There are a number of tables and a few stools for drinking at the bar. Outdoor seating also available. They also have the most intriguing ceiling fans I've ever seen. A large TV in one corner was showing international soccer (Mexico against Costa Rica), although the sound was muted in favour of classic big-band standards.

Verdict: If not for the thin crema...

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Maisson de Patisserie

Location: 2855 Steven's Creek Blvd., San Jose (inside Valley Fair mall)

Reviewed: June 9, 2007

Espresso: My shot request came nearly at the end of a pre-ground doser, and so I received some portion of freshly-ground beans. This actually resulted in a nicely persistent crema, considering the cappuccino cup used. The crema was medium in tone and of an even brownish color. However, it didn't live up to it's decent looks, as the taste was mostly ashy.

Atmosphere: This is a quite small location with lots of tables crammed into the space, which can make things uncomfortable.

Verdict: Almost shows promise.