The Pearlina tea shop shut down and was replaced by this French bakery/café. At its heart is a great artisan baker who makes extraordinary pastries and breads (and is a true artisan: no cookie cutter stuff here). This is the baker’s only retail outlet, as the French team behind it have supplied some 40 local restaurants for years.
It’s a tight space with a few indoor tables along the windows facing the sidewalk, but there are also a couple of outdoor tables and a bench. They’re heavy on the Equator Estate Coffees branding — making it clear at every opportunity who supplies their coffee.
Using a two-group La Spaziale at the back, they pull espresso shots with a striped, medium brown crema — somewhat thinner in size but thicker in consistency — often with a white dot stretched across the top (they haven’t perfected their brewing temperatures). It has a solid mouthfeel, and it tastes smoky — of tobacco and herbs, but just short of any ashiness or bitterness. About as good an espresso as you can expect from a French place.
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