Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Four Restaurants with Amazing Coffee Programs

*Photo and story courtesy of Bon Appetit

From BonAppetit.com:
"First, the bad news:  Most restaurants do a terrible job with coffee, treating it as an afterthought.  Which doesn't make any sense.  True, serving outstanding coffee takes commitment:  You need good gear, great ingredients, and employees who know how to use that portafilter.  But a knockout meal should wow you from crudités to cortado.  The good news?  More places are getting with the program, serving well-sourced, well-made coffee drinks to rival any high-end espresso bar. Here are four restaurants that go way beyond "regular or decaf?" --Oliver Strand

Austin, TX
"We spent more on coffee equipment than on the kitchen," says Geoff Peveto, co-owner of this gourmet hot dog spot.  (It's true. A La Marzocco GB5 espresso machine can run $13,000 or more; a high-end grinder $3,000.) The payoff?  Espressos as gorgeous as the ones from any tricked-out coffee bar.

This classic restaurant has a curated menu of beans from some of the country's best roasters.  The who's who of boutique beans includes Barismo, Heart Roasters, Intelligentsia, MadCap, Ritual, Sightglass, and Stumptown.  Offerings change with the season.

Eleven Madison Park
New York
Order a Chemex or siphon (the brewer at left), and the coffee is prepared tableside on an impressive cart.  It's a little bit of showmanship that leads to one of the finest cups you'll get at the end of a meal.

Woodberry Kitchen
Head barista Allie Caran oversees a team of five, each of whom go through up to two months of training before pulling a single shot for a customer.  There are always at least two baristas on the bar (and as many as four during brunch), which means no matter when you go, your coffee is made by a pro."

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