New York City — that backwater of quality espresso that has long proven, if I may paraphrase Frank Sinatra, “If you can make decent espresso there, you can make it anywhere” — has reportedly been hit by a “wave” (here we go again) of better coffee. Or so says today’s New York Times: Espresso’s New Wave Hits Town – New York Times.

It’s nothing we haven’t exactly seen before. The article touches on a few of the better quality espresso shops now in New York. But it does offer a nice overview of what goes into bean selection, roasting, dosing, tamping, and pulling a quality shot.

Meanwhile, those wizards of semi-stale coffee put under strict quality controls, Illy, announced the opening of another month-long, temporary exhibit in New York called “Beauty Has A Taste“: Illy Introduces ‘BEAUTY HAS A TASTE’ an Exhibition in the Heart of New York City.

Beverage marketers must be spending a lot of time at conventions having pajama parties to talk about this recent fad of sponsoring temporary exhibits/installations. I hesitate at the prospect of subjecting myself to a walk-in infomercial. But if I was in New York during the next month, curiosity would still probably get the better of me. Afterall, I was lame enough to stumble into the Glenlivet City Links miniature golf- and scotch-themed (no, really) exhibit on a lunch break last February.

UPDATE: Oct. 25, 2008
Yesterday the New York Times essentially published a two-year update to this same article: Beyond Starbucks – Coffee Shops Overflow, but Will Connoisseurs Pay the Price? – The difference now being that there are more and more decent places to get espresso in this long-standing coffee wasteland. Even so, calling New York “Bean Town” now (as in the title of the article) is a bit of a stretch — considering that there are still more than three million residents for every great espresso purveyor in town.