Back to the Grind

 May 28, 2013
Posted by jenn

More Coffee Please! cofee

We hope you enjoyed a truly wonderful Memorial Day weekend!  Celebrating the incredible dedication of our service men and women and all that they do to ensure our safety and freedom can certainly leave one feeling a bit red (in the eyes), white (pale for lack of sleep) and maybe even a little blue on the first day back at it.  To help get the swagger back in our step we, coffee lovers knew a single cup of the regular stuff wasn’t going to cut it today.  Today calls for multiple cups and we need it to be really gooood!  So… in a city full of caffeine pushers on every corner and building lobby we knew it would serve us to do some inquiring and find the best coffee shops in town.  We did just that and are pleased to share what we’ve learned.

According to local coffee connoisseurs the following shops and chains do coffee, atmosphere, customer service, and “unique” the best. Enjoy.
6.  Four Barrel Café: 2 SF Locations – Valencia and The Mills on Divisadero –
Four Barrel coffee makers are immensely proud of their vision for producing the very best cup of coffee and it’s paying off for them.  Customers love the art clad, cool atmosphere and rave their lattes are top-notch.  Equally tempting are the pastries.  A match made in heaven. A touted must coffee mate is the kouign amann – a dense chewy cross between a croissant and a sponge cake with caramelized butter giving it a candy crunchy top.  Sounds like decadence of the best kind.
5. Bello Coffee and Tea: 2 SF locations: Glen Park and Mission neighborhoods –
Art was not actually a criterion for our besties,,but how could we not admire some served in a cup of delicious espresso. And not only is it lovely to look at but both the drip coffee and the espresso (and all subcategories therein) at Bello are absolutely perfect.
While known for it’s quaint Geln Park neighborhood, in both shops you’ll experience a cool comfortable atmosphere. There’s a dreamy, Sunday afternoon feel.  But , be warned breezy can turn stormy when caffeine fueled political debates develop. Or so I’ve heard. With fast wifi and some space to meet, it’s a great place for a respite and espresso.
Besides, how can you go wrong with a mission like theirs: “We will never serve anything that isn’t the best.
We will always serve you amazing coffee.
We are coffee people and love what we do, and we want to share this love, one cup at a time.”
4. Jane:  1 Location – Pacific Heights –
To quote a critic: “Jane looks as if an Edwardian-inspired doll’s house was built to hipster specifications. Everything is top-notch dainty inside from the unique decor to the nice selection of pastries and foods.”
Jane is a cute little cafe on Fillmore who serves up cup after cup of Portland’s now famous Stumptown coffee. Stumptown is rated one of the highest coffees nationwide.  Customers and critics love Jane not only for their coffee but boast their staff is efficient and friendly. The ambiance is definitely somewhere you can rediscover your lost inspiration and forget all about it being that dreaded M day. Psst try for a seat on the balcony.
3. Philz: 13 Bay Area Locations –
Known for character and coffee.  Phil Jaber has been serving up flavorful, complex, rich, smooth coffee since he opened his first shop in 2003. His slogan “ Enjoy Your Cup of Love” speaks volumes.  His atmosphere as described by a fan “…it’s one of those places that always brings me to my happy place”.
Philzevangelist recommended drinks include:.
Philtered Soul
Silken Splendor
Mocha Tesora
Iced Mint Mojito
6 SF locations and more in Sausalito, Menlo Park, Palo Alto, Cupertino and Berkeley, Including Facebook HQ
A little caffeine amped birdy told us Philz on 24th and Mission is the best location
Philz says ”While we may not be able to make the world happy at once, we are determined to do it one community, one cup at a time.” =)
2. Blue Bottle Coffee: 5 Locations in SF and 1 in Oakland –
James Freeman put Blue Bottle on the map by individually brewing each cup of coffee for customers (a blessing and a curse, undoubtedly). The organic, shade-grown, pesticide-free beans used are roasted fresh, in vintage roasting machines, defining what’s now called “slow coffee.” Blue Bottle is, apparently loved by many with high praise for its customer service and the atmosphere in its shops.
Words straight from the Blue Bottle’s mouth -“Our roasters (the people, not the machines) undergo a rigorous apprenticeship before they are allowed to roast coffee for our discerning customers. Their dedication, intuition, endurance, good humor, and willpower are tested while they learn to know the machine as well as a concert pianist knows her or his Bechstein”
1. Ritual Coffee Roasters: Located in Napa and a variety of SF locations –
Clearly good coffee is not hard to find in San Francisco — Thank goodness. But with nearly perfect scores for its coffee and single-origin espresso, Central, South America, and Africa sourced and brewed in Japanese V60 cone brewers – Ritual was the favorite. At the shop on Valencia Street in San Francisco, and its accompanying locations (a coffee bar in the Bayview neighborhood, a shipping container at Proxy in Hayes Valley, and in the Oxbow Market in Napa), it’s just coffee, pure and simple served in and a unique, yuppy, geek and local loving atmosphere.  So good people were all a “buzz”!
More Favorites:
Martha Bros Coffee
Contraband (Coffee Bar)
Farley’s Coffee
Java Beach
Peet’s Coffee & Tea
The Beanery
Intelligentsia Bar (In Specialty’s)
Caffee Trieste
Stumptown (Ma’velous)
Henry’s House of Coffee