Whirlybird (Williamsburg)

What’s better than a café that serves great coffee? One that also serves breakfast tacos – mouthwateringly delicious ones. This is going to be my final post on Good Coffee Now (I don’t live in New York anymore), and it seems only fitting that I should finish up by profiling a place that covers off my two favourite things in one spot. Don’t take my word for it though – go get yourself an iced latte and a couple of these perfectly turned out delights ($3 each, $4 with chorizo). The tortillas are delicate, the scrambled egg perfectly soft, with just the right amount of Oaxaca cheese mixed through. They’re topped with a salsa that’s like none I’ve tried before, cilantro and a sprinkle of crushed up potato chips – and chorizo on request. If I were trapped here for a week I’d be completely content.

Location: South 2nd at Havemeyer
Hours: Mon-Fri 8am-4pm; Sat-Sun 9am-5pm
Subway: J, M, Z to Marcy; L to Bedford or Lorimer
Website: www.whirlybirdbrooklyn.com

Close to: Nhà Tôi, Caracas Arepa Bar, Roebling Tea Room, High Horse Salon.

Bittersweet (Fort Greene)

bittersweetThis cosy little spot on Fort Greene’s main drag works best if you’re looking for a quick bite or something to go. It’s small, but the coffee’s great – and they serve homemade ice-cream too! At around $5 a pop the baguettes are another highlight, as are: La Colombe espresso, pastries by Balthazar and the fact Fort Greene Park’s right across the street, with its weekly Artisan market.

Location: Dekalb Ave (Carlton and Cumberland)
Hours: Mon-Fri 7am-5pm; Sat-Sun 7.30am-7pm
Subway: B, M, Q, R to DeKalb; G to Fulton St

Close to: Fort Greene Park (and Saturday Artisan market), Smooch, Thirst Wine, The General Greene, Roman’s.

Variety (Greenpoint / Williamsburg)

cappuccino at VarietyVariety have been serving up the good stuff (a.k.a. Stumptown single origin) to Williamsburg locals for a while now. With a second outpost in Greenpoint they also manage sister restaurant Miller’s Tavern’s (Hope St, Williamsburg) coffee supply. Driggs St is mini – so if you stop here be prepared to take your coffee to go – but Grand St is relatively roomy, with an easy aesthetic and general good vibe. Pastries and the like are your only food pair here – coffee’s the focus and they do it well.

Location: Graham Ave (Conselyea and Skillman)
Hours: 7am-9pm daily
Subway: L to Graham
Close to: Carmine’s Pizza, Mother’s, McCarren Park.

Location: Driggs Ave (Humboldt and Russell)
Hours: Mon-Fri 7.30am-6pm; Sat-Sun 9am-6pm
Subway: G to Nassau
Close to: McGolrick Park, McCarren Park, Fox & Fawn, no name bar (on Manhattan Ave).

Website: www.varietynyc.com

Tiny Cup (Bed Stuy)

Another apartment, another local – and in the time I’ve been living in Bed Stuy Tiny Cup’s changed hands and changed decor but managed to retain its identity as a neighborhood hub and only grown in charm. After hitting some bumps after the changeover, this little corner shop is now hitting its stride with excellent coffee, great food (try the chili relleno!) and a homey atmosphere. I love working out of here because there’s heaps of light, space and they’re always playing some jam I like! Their prices are as friendly as the staff, and they have lots of vegan and vegetarian options too. I’m moving out of the neighborhood soon – and onto yet another local, no doubt! – but I’m going to miss this spot for sure.

Location: Nostrand (Lafayette and Clifton)
Hours: Mon-Fri 7.30am-6pm; Sat-Sun 9am-6pm
Subway: G to Bedford-Nostrand
Website: www.facebook.com/TinyCupBedStuy

Close to: Dough, Black Swan, Home Depot, Tompkins Park.

Ninth Street Espresso (Chelsea / Alphabet City)

With three locations around NYC, and serving Intelligentsia, Ninth Street Espresso is an essential watering hole for any espresso lover. They are a little pricier than a lot of coffee shops, but you’ll be served a quality drop every time. The espresso bar in Chelsea Market is great if you need a coffee on the go, but my favourite locations are in Alphabet City: on East 9th St and Avenue C, and opposite Tompkins Square Park on East 10th and Avenue B. I’ve spent many mornings sit at the windows of both, waking up with a coffee and watching the world go by.

Espresso bar only, no food. Seating in market.
Location: 75 9th Ave (9th Ave and 10th Ave)
Hours: Mon-Fri 7am-9pm, Sat 9am-8pm, Sun 9am-7pm
Subway: A C E to 14th St; 1 2 to 14th St or 18th St; L to 8th Ave; F M to 14th St
Close to: Chelsea Markets, the Highline, Milk Gallery, Myers of Keswick.

Original store and biggest location. Sweet treats only.
Location: 700 East 9th St (Ave C and Ave D)
Hours: 7am-8pm daily
Subway: L to 1st Ave; F to 2nd Ave
Close to: Esperanto, Barnyard Cheese Shop, Tompkins Square Park, East River Park.

Small shop opposite the park. Sweet treats only.
Location: 341 East 10th St (Ave A and Ave B)
Hours: 7am-8pm daily
Subway: L to 1st Ave; F to 2nd Ave
Close to: Tompkins Square Park, Life Café, Ost, Ciao For Now.

Website: www.ninthstreetespresso.com

Everyman Espresso (East Village)

Everyman-Espresso-NYCLocated in the foyer of the Classic Stage Company theater, Everyman Espresso is tucked away on a relatively quiet East Village street, blocks away from the busyness of Union Square. Serving Counter Culture Coffee and milk from Battenkill Valley Creamery in Salem, NY, the baristas are friendly, consistent and well-trained. Some counterfood, including sweet treats from Ceci Cela, and I’ve seen quiche on offer here too.. always worthy of a mention! Tuck this one away for when you’re stuck running errands around Union Square and need to recharge.

Location: East 13th St (3rd and 4th Aves)
Hours: Mon-Fri 7am-8pm; Sat-Sun 8am-8pm
Subway: L to 3rd Ave; 4, 5, 6, N, Q, R to Union Square
Website: www.everymanespresso.com

Close to: Union Square, Momofuku Milk Bar, Kiehl’s, Trader Joe’s.

Modca (Williamsburg)

The sister restaurant to El Beit, Modca opened earlier this year, conveniently close to The Brooklyn Art Library and Mast Brothers Chocolate factory on Nth 3rd in Williamsburg. I was loving their full food menu but unfortunately they pulled it recently and are now just doing counterfood. Nonetheless, Modca is a great, spacious café where you can kick back and read the paper or get a little work done in peace… and then go sample Mast Brothers’ delicious range next door!

Location: 103 N3rd (Berry and Wythe)
Hours: Mon-Sun 7am-12am
Subway: L to Bedford; J, M, Z to Marcy Ave
Website: None, but they’re on Facebook.

Close to: The Brooklyn Art Library, Mast Brothers Chocolate, Blue Bottle Coffee, East River Park.

Nolita Mart & Espresso Bar (Chinatown)

cortado at nolita mart & espresso barJames Fong and Selina Ho have done a great job with this Nolita/Chinatown café and general store. Located on Mott St between Broome and Grand, this beautifully constructed shop is the only decent espresso bar in Chinatown (even if it weren’t, I’d still bang on about it!) Having chosen to serve only Stumptown Coffee – because they can get it fresh every day, or on call, from the roaster’s Red Hook roastery – their baristas also receive frequent training sessions and advice from Stumptown. Their milk is locally sourced, from Battenkill Valley Creamery in Salem, NY, and the mart itself specialises in locally sourced, organic and sustainable products, from snacks to refillable cleaning products (available products include People’s Pops, Common Good, Anarchy in a Jar, Blue Marble Ice-Cream, New York Naturals, McClure’s Pickles and more!)

They also recently started offering refillable take-home growlers of cold brewed iced coffee, which has been a huge hit – the 64oz growler itself goes for $3.99, then it’s yours to keep and fill with as much cold brew as you like ($13.99 per fill). Or, if hot espresso’s more your bag, fill your growler with beer instead – a selection of local craft brews are available on tap! Fresh pastries arrive daily from Ceci Cela Patisserie, and Selena herself makes the light and crispy chocolate chip cookies ($1.25) and dense, fudgy (amazing!) baby chocolate brownies ($1.50). There’s room at their two bars if you want to sit for a while, and they also offer free wifi.

Tastings and live music events are frequent happenings too, so it’s worth keeping an eye on their website (below), or Twitter.

*64oz growlers – fill ‘em with iced coffee or beer
*Common Good laundry detergent, hand soap and dishwashing liquid
*Battenkill Valley Creamery milk (buy a glass bottle for $2.50 and trade it when you’re out)

Location: 156 Mott St (Broome and Grand)
Hours: Mon-Thurs 8am-9.30pm; Fri 8am-10pm; Sat 8.30-10pm; Sun 8.30-9.30pm
Subway: B, D to Grand; 4, 6 to Spring or Canal; N, Q to Canal; J to Bowery; J, Z to Canal
Website: www.nolitamart.com

Close to: Chinatown, Little Italy, Built by Wendy, Sohotel, La Esquina.

Sweetleaf (Long Island City)

This LIC gem is located right off the Queens end of the Pulaski Bridge, no more than a 10-minute walk from MoMA PS1. Serving some of the finest single origin espresso around, I’d make this spot my go-to even if they weren’t the only decent coffee shop in the area! They also have a pour over bar, and a great selection of counterfood that includes a tasty range of gluten free and vegan options. I tried a veggie lasagne and strawberry black pepper scone that were both delicious! The shop itself is a great space – they expanded last year so it now spills into two rooms, and the floor to ceiling windows along the front wall make it easy to stare out at the world while you ease into the day, always a bonus to me!

Location: 10-93 Jackson Ave (48th and 49th Aves)
Hours: Mon-Fri 7am-8pm; Sat 8am-8pm; Sun 9am-6pm
Subway: G to 21st St; 7, 7X to Vernon Blvd-Jackson Av
Website: www.sweetleaflic.com

Close to: MoMA PS1, Magasin Wells diner, Gantry Plaza State Park (and the Pepsi sign!), Pulaski Bridge.

Bakeri (Williamsburg)

Walk into Bakeri and you might find your inner self does a little jump and kicks its heels together. Not only do the baristas here nail the coffee, the quaint (in the very best way) décor and cabinet overflowing with incredible looking treats, from brownies to fritatta and cookies the size of your face, will mean there’s little chance of you walking away unsatisfied – unless you ate before you came, in which case your inner self will be kicking itself. The space is small, but roll in on the early side and you’ll find it’s a great place to relax with the drop of your choice and a fresh baked brioche. Pick up a loaf of bread or baguette – all baked in house – on your way out and you’ll feel like you’re in New York and Paris (and New Zealand!) all at once. There’s a selection of made to order salads and sandwiches available too.

Location: 150 Wythe Ave (N7th and N8th)
Hours: 8am-7pm daily
Subway: L to Bedford
Website: www.bakeribrooklyn.com

Close to: East River Park (home to the Brooklyn Flea/Smorgasburg on weekends), In God We Trust, Artists & Fleas market, D.O.C. wine bar, Nita Nita.