In DC for a meeting earlier this week. Afternoon free on Wed. Metro over to Natl Geographic office to view "Gospel of Judas." Kind of inspiring to look at something that was written over 1600 years ago (not a copy, but the real thing). Still had some time, so back on the Metro to Eastern Market stop (Orange/Blue line). Out of the metro, cross the intersection diagonally (lots of school kids having fun as school had just let out) to Murky Coffee. "Our mission is to serve you the best d**n coffee in the district." Wait for the guy in front who is ordering 8 different foo-foo drinks (mocha this, latte that). Finally my turn. "Double espresso for here." My cup goes on top of the espresso machine in line with all the paper cups for the foo-foo drinks. I'm getting a thick porcelain espresso cup. Watching the barista. Great economy of motion. Dump grounds, hit grinder switch (grinds don't sit too long in the doser), flick flick flick, sweep sweep, tamp (portafilter on the counter edge, hand-held tamper), flick, tamp with twist, dump loose grounds, lock into machine. Repeat. :-) When my cup comes up, first she runs some hot water into it to prewarm the cup (you can bet this wasn't happening with the paper cups.) Portafilter loading was the same practiced routine, but after locking it into the machine, she apparently prewarms the filter (flicked a switch, nothing coming from the spout). Eventually, two dark streams of espresso start pouring into my cup. She watches intently and cuts it off when she feels it's done enough. Result: about 1/3 full in the cup, dark swirling crema on top, intensely flavored espresso, sweet with some bite. Three sips and I'm done. Looked to me like they just bang-em-out for the foo-foo customers, but when someone wants the real thing, they pay much better attention and care. I also tried their "classic cappuccino" -- in a porcelain "coffee cup", "for here only, no substitutions." Very nice, prettily presented, great coffee-in-microfoamed-milk flavor and texture. This place is not in the tourist area, being south and east of the capitol, just off of Penna Ave (the direction away from the White House). It's very possible it's got the best coffee in DC, though. I did spot a storefront near Federal Triangle (about 11th and E St NW) with a big sign saying "Coffee Roaster". I was going the other direction on an errand and didn't get to investigate more closely. Maybe someone else can take up the hunt there. -- =Spencer in Ann Arbor My Unitarian Jihad http://tinyurl.com/6valr)Name is: Sibling Dagger of Mild Reason What are you?http://homepage.mac.com/whump/ujname.html
Great post, Spencer. The local places near me don't make straight espresso well because they're so used to making the "foo-foo" drinks. And don't you hate getting stuck in line behind them while when you just want coffee? Never fails, someone in front of me wants a skinny chai latte with vanilla syrup and I just want a large coffee to go. Tara
Gotta say that Murky Coffee does a great job, and they promote coffee! Nick Cho was MC at the US Barista Champs. He and his minions organized the mid-atlantic Barisat Champs. And Nick puts out www.portafilter.net, which is pretty cool and has cool podcasts. Murky lives and breathes coffee - a great DC resource! -Greg At 02:51 PM 4/28/2006 -0400, you wrote: <Snip>
It's always great to hear about places so when you go to visit you can stil= l get great coffee, i was at the only local place to not be Corperate coffee today, thier espresso is good, not great, the counterpeople (i refuse to call the untrained baristas) dont really understand the concept of applying pressure to the tamp, they tamp but not quite enough and it seems just to level off the shot, the quality of the coffee is great they roast instore with a really nice Diedrich Roaster. SO today i got a Breve (steamed 1/2 an= d 1/2) with 2 shots, very nice, in fact i got a second. In the midst of all the sh***y coffee houses out there it is better, but i wish they cared more about the shot. Woody On 4/28/06, Greg Scace wrote: <Snip> t <Snip> -- "Good night, and Good Coffee"
They have another one in Arlington, VA, in one of the newer, burgeoning sections of downtown (a small parking lot, but on-street is available). Same great service and coffee (they use Counter Culture from Cary, NC). On Apr 28, 2006, at 9:19 AM, Spencer Thomas wrote: <Snip> Sandy Andina www.sandyandina.com
I visited the Arlington location about a year ago, but it's harder to get to on the Metro from where I was, and also I wanted to visit the "home" location. On 4/28/06, Sandy Andina wrote: <Snip> ribes) go tohttp://sweetmarias.com/maillistinfo.html#personalsettings<Snip> -- =Spencer in Ann Arbor My Unitarian Jihad http://tinyurl.com/6valr)Name is: Sibling Dagger of Mild Reason What are you?http://homepage.mac.com/whump/ujname.html
On 4/29/06, Spencer Thomas wrote: <Snip> I"m going to have to try this place (the one in DC), which is within walkin= g distance from where I work. Awesome. The only place I knew about in the D= C area that did coffee was Misha's down in Alexandria, with which I've not been terribly impressed. -- Steven Hay hay.steve -AT- gmail.com Barry Paradox: Consider k to be the greatest element of the set of natural numbers whose description require maximum of 50 words: "(k+1) is a natural number which requires more than 50 words to describe it."
On 4/28/06, Spencer Thomas wrote: <Snip> ... My cup goes on top of the espresso machine in line with all the paper <Snip> I went here yesterday and got an Americano, and I noticed the same thing. She looked proficient to me. Shot duration was good, portafilter prewarmed, latte art in the capps and lattes... With places like this, it is amazing starbucks can survive at all.. Anyways, I'm happy to find this place since here pretty soon I should be able to walk there from both work and home. Finally a place to grab some coffee and maybe learn some technique. -- Steven Hay hay.steve -AT- gmail.com Barry Paradox: Consider k to be the greatest element of the set of natural numbers whose description require maximum of 50 words: "(k+1) is a natural number which requires more than 50 words to describe it."