Tar Pit, in east Williamsburg or Greenpoint

I recently went with a friend to that little coffee shop called Tar Pit. Its a few blocks from my friend’s home, and now, the closest decent coffee shop around it so we decided to give it a try on that sunday morning!

The area is a little bit off north-east of the Graham avenue neighborhood in brooklyn, in that semi-residential semi-industrial area after the BQE, south Greenpoint and east Williamsburg. Looking at the exact spot, and looking at Wikipedia, I would say this is Williamsburg (1 block from Greenpoint) but some people call it Greenpoint… Where is the truth? Anyway,  not as many pedestrian traffic as on Bedford avenue. or in Manhattan, however definitely many people living there, and only a few blocks from Graham. Could be a good bet!

I would not write about it if my espresso had nothing remarkable. But it did! Very nice shot, dark but not too much, good crema, perfect extraction. Not too chocolate taste (yes I am in a period where i dont want my espresso to be too chocolate, for me it starts to do like oak in wine… ). Yummy!

The coffee is from a small local roaster called kitten coffee. I almost bought some beans but decided to keep it for later (have a bit of a stock now at home) but from the taste of my espresso it seems they do a real good job there (Luckily they look better at roasting than at making good looking websites or knock boxes…)

And about the place, what to say? Very nice and small cosy coffee shop, the staff was very kind. I missed a good cold glass of good water with my shot (I had not that good, not totally cold tap water). Barista does a very good job as I also tried the Capucino of my friend. Oh! And also, surprising for a coffee shop of that size, they do a slow drip japanese style cold brewed coffee. I didn’t try, it’s not my thing, but it is interesting!

in short, if your in the area and want a good coffee slightly off the main trails, go check it out! You won’t regret.

  •  Tar Pit
    135 Woodpoint Rd.
    Brooklyn NY 11222

Upright on Manhattan avenue

Upright Coffee, this is my everyday coffee spot!

They opened sometime spring 2011 and I think I was one of their first customers… It’s a 1mn walk from my home and since I haven’t yet (re)invested in an espresso machine, it’s there that I’m having my daily shots. Americanos’ the early morning and Espressos for the rest of the day.

While the first month, clearly they were not pouring the best espresso’s ever, they quickly improved, and have a small but nice rotating staff doing a pretty good job behind the Marzocco now. Not yet top of the cups but getting there.

They use coffee from the Brooklyn Roasting company, which does a pretty good job. If your in Greenpoint, and looking for a good espresso, it’s definitely a good spot, their are not that many in the heart of Greenpoint. You can also buy beans there. I’ve heard from them they are on their way to open another coffee shop in Manhattan (547 Hudson St.) and I look forward to go check it up.

For a full experience, go play pinball at the laundry next door!

Champion on Manhattan

Ok, this is the first one appearing on this blog, a small coffee shop at the top north of Manhattan avenue in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. It’s been almost a year that I targeted it but never tried it. It looked very good from the outside, and I must say I am surprised that I didn’t go there before. Fancy, slightly brooklynish style but not too much, a nice FAEMA E61 that you can see from the street, well good feeling.

English: Espresso making on espresso machine F...

The machine must have been of this kind - Image via Wikipedia

Today so, I was for some reasons close to that place and went for an espresso here.

They use Oslo roasters. This was not necessarily a good sign. I don’t dislike it but I have never been amazed by Oslo coffee.

When I enter, choice offered for espresso are single, double or triple shots. Surprising, very few places I went lately would suggest triple, but also very few steel brew single shot. An espresso is now very often by default a “double shot”.

Here comes the espresso, though I couldn’t blame my barista as there is no rule, disapointment, this was really a lot of liquid. I should have ask “ristretto” here. May be being in this kind of coffee shop, I was sure it would be also by default something short and dense enough, it was definitely not. The coffee was not that bad, but no strong taste or flavor, however way to “longo” for me, a lot of water and a bit too much extraction.

I might go back, ask for Ristretto, but no, not convinced. I was sure the coffee was way better there as it looked very promising, I’ll have to come another time, may be it was a bad day… but as we all know, that is the story about, being consistent!

  • Champion Coffee
    1108 Manhattan Ave # A,
    Brooklyn, NY 11222-1040
    (718) 383-5195 ‎
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