This cafeteria-like spot opened along Trinity Place in late 2005. Heavy Illy branding, some Italian staff, and italianate sandwiches. This is the first location this small chain brought west of NYC.
It has a massive amount of metal outdoor seating along Trinity Place and a long indoor space with window counter and booths. Why there is a projection TV above the salad bar is another story. But they use a two-group UNIC ZR (which are popping up at many of these heavily Illy branded places) to pull a lukewarm, relatively large-sized shot. It has that expected Illy warming flavor of some mild spice and woodiness (more cedar than pine), but it also has a subtle caramel element I haven’t tasted in your typical Illy spot.
The crema is pale to medium brown and rather thin, and it isn’t helped by their choice of wide-mouthed cappuccino cups. While they are designer Illy IPA cups, they also have smaller espresso demitasse equivalents they aren’t using for some reason.
As a relatively new place in the neighborhood, I expect their relatively late weeknight hours to cut back from 7pm rather quickly to make ends meet.
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