Monday, July 6, 2009

The New Kids on Your Block

Oh boy, what a year for new coffeehouses. Halfway through 2009 and already there are enough small businesses out there to revitalize half a dozen neighborhoods.

Below is a quick run-down of the new spots in PDX. Chances are one of these is probably just around the block from you, so be friendly, go meet a new coffeehouse today.

The Red E Cafe - Serving Coava Coffee
1006 N. Killingsworth Street, Portland OR 97217
6AM - 8PM everyday

You know when a really good TV show spins off another TV show? Or when band members of a successful band break off to create their own sound? Well sometimes it happens in coffee too. Introducing Keith Miller and Mindy Farley, onetime employees of the esteemed Albina Press, now running their own shop. Between the two of them they have tons of coffee and coffeehouse experience and it shows. The Red E Cafe is simple, functional and only open a month or so, it already has it's own set of regular customers from the neighborhood.

What is most exciting about Red E is the new coffee being slung here.

Another Albina Press ex-pat Matt Higgins, has been roasting his own beans under the name Coava Coffee. And aside from the occasional BARISTA rotation, Red E is the only place you'll be able to get this great coffee.

Higgins puts a lot of thought, elbow grease and love into his roasts and each cup is full of personality without being overbearing in flavor.

Cartola Coffee - Serving Stumptown Roasters
2723 NE 7th Avenue, Portland, OR. 97212
Mon-Fri. 7:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Sat-Sun. 7:30 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.

Downright Parisian, Cartola is a sweet little spot in Irvington. Like Red E, this place is brightening up the 7th and Knott neighborhood. It certainly matches the sleek little condo that went up down the block last year, but don't write it off as gentrification. This place has heart.

It was opened up by the hardworking team of Simone de Souza and Kit Ciorba.The shots pulled here are very solid. They manage to tease out the subtle notes of Stumptown's Hairbender more than most places.

You will find a great cup of coffee and originally, you could find goods from Pearl Bakery, the only place on the east side carrying Pearl Bakery items. However they have recently switched to that master of the coffeehouse pastry, Nuvrie.

Posies Cafe - Serving Ristretto Roasters
8208 N. Denver Ave., Portland OR 97217
Mon – Thur: 7am – 9pm
Fri: 7am – 10pm
Sat: 8am – 10pm
Sun: 8am – 6pm

Posies Cafe opened earlier this spring in the Kenton neighborhood. This cafe is the best example so far of micro-local. Jessie Burke envisioned using only the most local vendors, suppliers and employees to create this destination spot for cafe-lovers of all sizes.

Serving Florio pastries, located in the North Portland area, and Ristretto Roasters, also in the North Portland area, Posies sets the bar high for other businesses wanting to be thought of as "local." For instance, all the chairs in the place were sourced from about 4 or 5 doors down the block at the antique shop. That's local.

Acme Coffee - Serving Ristretto Roasters
1431 SE 40th Ave Portland, OR 97214
Monday-Friday 7am-7pm.
Saturday 8am-7pm and Sunday 10am-4pm

Sometimes don't you want to just chuck your desk job and do something that really excites you? Ken Sellen and Jason Gooder did just that, and the result is Acme Coffee. Located off Hawthorne, this place is hard to put into words.

It's a little cluttered on the outside, with antiques and signs decorating the porch of this old house. But step inside and you'll find a finely decorated and warm living room. There is a cherry tree located out back where the neighbors stop by with their ladder to have their fill of free fruit. Friendly is kind of an understatement when describing Acme Coffee.

Like Posies, Acme Coffee is serving Ristretto Roasters, extending Ristretto's reach into the SE Portland area. You can enjoy the always classy Nuvrie baked goods, but for now, you'll have to have cash, as Acme has yet to hook up their card swiping service.

Happy Sparrow Cafe - Serving Batdorf and Bronson
3001 SE Belmont St, Portland, OR 97214
M-F 7am - 2pm, Sa 9am-3pm

Ever get tired of the same ol' doughnut or scone business you see around Portland? Me too. Welcome to the Happy Sparrow Cafe, where you can get a selection of warm, freshly baked buns with a variety of fillings.

They are called Kolaches and when I stopped by they had a chicken and jalapeno bun, vegan bun, and sausage with Tillamook cheddar bun.

I actually can't wait for the cold, damp mornings of winter to come so I can warm up with a cup of coffee and some of these moist stuffed buns. Also available are flavored sparkling sodas, Vietnamese iced coffee and smoothies.

Elevated Coffee - Serving Stumptown Roasters
5261 NE MLK Blvd Portland OR 97211
6am-7pm everyday

Perking up the Vanport Square development on MLK, Elevated Coffee brings you Stumptown and local jazz. With its white baby grand piano in the corner and lots of local art decorating the main wall, Elevated is certainly trying to be a hub of community activity for the MLK area.

1 comment:

The Neo Com said...

The 'lox' Kolache was amazing!