When people talk Bay Area specialty roasters, especially in San Francisco, you tend to hear three names over and over: Blue Bottle, Ritual, and Four Barrel. Of course, there's good reason for that. All are excellent, and can be found all over the city. But of course there are many other great roasters in the Bay Area. And one in particular, Barefoot Coffee Roasters, seems to inspire an almost cult-like level of devotion and in this case one of the most, um, interesting job application videos we've ever seen.
Life has been nothing but boxes in recent weeks. After eleven years spent in the Mission, Nopa, and the Haight, I'm moving out to the avenues. I'm excited about the new neighborhood, but also a little worried I'm going to have culture shock. Not because of the fog, the Haight is little better and the view from my window is pure gray at the moment. Nor am I worried about nightlife, my carousing days are long behind me. Rather, I'm worried about my ability to get a decent cup of coffee or shot of espresso with any regularity.
This is what amazes me about San Francisco: The fact that when I meet people for the first time, more often than not they know more about food or drink than I do. On the food obsession radar, it turns out, I score shockingly low. One of my neighbors regularly helps his friend to throw 12 person, nine-course meals. Another of my friends hunts for morels and has made his own cheese. Another one hauled a sate grill back from Thailand in his suitcase.
I don't know how many of you remember the great charcuterie tsunami of the mid-2000s, but you have it to thank for the prevalence of mid-grade house-cured meats that you can now find on the menus of nearly every restaurant in or around an urban center. Taken from a distance, this is a fine trend—who am I to begrudge cured meats? But when poorly executed it doesn't matter if it's housemade. I cite this historically relevant culinary event only because I fear it has begun to happen with coffee.
Well, what can we say? It's about time. We predict that in a few years that little blue bottle you see to the left will be popping up elsewhere—New York? Los Angeles? Seattle? Blue Bottle, it's time to fly.
Until the techies’ dream of city-wide WiFi becomes a reality, coffee shops are still the best places to plug in and plug away. Here are seven of our favorite spots for free browsing and good coffee.
There's a cute new coffee shop in the Sunset, and though the decor inside looked scrumptious (this based on peering through the window) there didn't seem much fodder for design talk - that is until today. Thanks to Apartment Therapy for this article, which brought to attention the fact that the lovely home accessories spotted inside Hollow are actually for sale.