Coffee, what's the buzz

Old Jul 6th, 2002, 09:55 PM
  #1  
marli
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Coffee, what's the buzz

I'm going to Seattle for a weekend get-away. Does anyone know some really happening coffee joints in the downtown area?
thanks!
 
Old Jul 7th, 2002, 09:16 AM
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Paul
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You can go to the original Starbucks near Pikes Place market. Pretty cool!
 
Old Jul 7th, 2002, 11:31 AM
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Betsy
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Skip Starbucks (don't look back) and head for Torrefazzione. Original cafe is at Pioneer Square, a beautiful setting for a relaxing cup of coffee. The Italian ceramics store next door is heavenly.
 
Old Jul 7th, 2002, 11:32 AM
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Betsy
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Oops, it's Torrefazione.

http://www.titalia.com/site/location...lt.asp#seattle
 
Old Jul 7th, 2002, 01:01 PM
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Owen O'Neill
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I second the motion for Torrefazione Italia. I buy their Perugia blend by mail to make espresso at home and can't wait until my August Seattle trip to have some in the cafe. Also check out Cafe Vivace. Excellent espresso drinks - the owner, David Scomer, is somethign of a legend in coffee circles - he was one of the people instrumental in bringing a higher level of awareness and knowledge to the US espresso community since the black elixir finally started becoming popular here.
 
Old Jul 8th, 2002, 06:34 AM
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Paul
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Definitely don't "skip Starbucks". I'm tired of the "Starbucks doesn't use organic milk" BS. Go to Starbucks and the other ones too.
Paul
 
Old Jul 8th, 2002, 07:17 AM
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Owen O'Neill
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Unlike many self-professed "coffee geeks", I don't knock Starbucks as a matter of general practice. I think they do a decent and very consistent job with their latte and cappucino based drinks and they seem to be one of the only places that gets it right when they make frozen coffee drinks. That said... I think their regular drip coffee is abysmal. I've tried using their beans at hoem and actually got a decent cup although it was a bit on the dark roast side for my taste. the dilemma with the drip they szerve in their stores is that they bump up the amount of coffee relative to water and it's just too strong (too the point of being bitter). I travel frequently and appreciate the fact that I can go into a Starbucks in almost any city and haqve a fairly good idea what to expect. Despite this, i always make an effort to seek out the local places or small regional chains and have had many pleasant surprises (including Torrefazione Italia, which I discovered on a trip to SF). The Starbucks on Pike Place in Seattle is interesting from a historical perspective as it is the starting point for all Starbucks but it's a plain jane shop with little to no seating and none of the ambience that one usually associates with Starbucks. Still worth seeing tyo just to know you've been there and Pike Place Market is great fun (I'm already salivating in anticipation of the fresh Dungeness crab cocktail I'll be eating there in August!).
 
Old Jul 8th, 2002, 08:46 AM
  #8  
end
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The best coffee in Seattle (and beyond) is at Vivace Espresso. They have a roasteria and a sidewalk stand, both on Capitol Hill in Seattle.

Vivace consistently wins national and worldwide coffee competitions. One taste will convince you! It's truly the best. Try the Nico or White Velvet if you don't want a latte.
 
Old Jul 8th, 2002, 08:46 AM
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Wendy
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Torrefazione Italia is my favorite cafe in Seattle because of the location- Pioneer Square, outside seating, very relaxing! But for a fun "happening" cafe check out the Bahaus on Capital Hill. And on Queen Anne try El Diablo which is a great for coffee, wine, beer, desserts and live entertainment on the weekend nights.
 
Old Jul 8th, 2002, 08:48 AM
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By the way, Torrefazione was bought out by SBC (Seattle's Best Coffee) a few years ago. SBC is a pseudo-Starbucks coffee conglomerate with mediocre coffee; I think Torrefazione has suffered.
 
Old Jul 8th, 2002, 08:56 AM
  #11  
Owen O'Neill
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I had heard that fact about Torrefazione (the SBC buyout) and I didn't try them pre-buyout but can assure you that their whole bean product is still exceptionally good. I like a medium roast espresso blend and prefer their Perugia over Vivace's standard espresso blend but find both to be excellent. Training and technique of the barista's is always a critical factor and that seems to be the factor that suffers the most in buyouts or when there are big chains involved. Starbucks has standard procedures yet I've been in busy Starbucks where the barista didn't even bother to tamp the grounds before drawing the shot! Most of my espresso drinks are consumed at home where I have only myself to blame if results aren't good.
 
Old Jul 8th, 2002, 08:59 AM
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gigi
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I like Seattle's Best much better than Starbuck's for a chain product. Their raspberry kiss drink is great on a cold rainy morning. But for a frozen drink, Coffee Bean's vanilla drink in LA is the best!
 
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