So every week, I fall more in love with the city I live in. I hang at this chill coffee spot in the East Village that makes the best drip coffee in the city, hands down. While I’m there I read a bit and talk to the owners of the shop. It’s a tiny spot. You could easily miss it and I love that only “the curious” and “the devoted” find it. I love it because of the passion the owners have for what they do. Coffee and baked goods are their art! The interactions with their customers are the frames in which they choose to display their works. The frames are every shape and size. Some people stop by and they don’t even need to order. They are “the devoted.” Others size up the shop, try to figure out what is good and order. These represent “the curious.”
In some instances, customers will ask one another what they are having. The vibe is incredible. It’s slightly intimidating, but that’s New York. You get in there and ask for what you want. If you’re shy, you’ll miss out on a great thing. If you ask Jaime, the barista, for some guidance his standard response is that it depends on what you like. The shop forces you to either embrace the experience or leave. Unless you ask for soy milk, almond milk, or a mocha. If you ask for any of those options you should just leave. I have seen many people come in and ask for these options and they receive one of two responses. The two responses are either: “Come on bro we don’t do that” or, if it is late in the afternoon, a simple wry smile followed by the phrase, “That’s not us.” It’s not that Jaime is rude. It’s that he is a specialist; an artist. Liz is an incredible baker and her pastries never make it to the case unless they have been perfected. She sets the aesthetic. It is clean and simple. It is comfortable, small and honest. They haven’t sold out. They want you to have your drink and baked goods for here rather than to go. If you order your drink for here, Jaime generally responds with a “Cool man.” They want you to chill and mingle with them, even if you say nothing after you order.
Jaime and Liz create community and they are amazing ambassadors for the East Village. Abraço Espresso on 7th St. and 1st Ave. is my coffee outpost. I’ve made the transition from “the curious” to “the devoted.” You should also.