On the fourth floor among the more elegant mall eateries of the downtown Westfield Centre, this bakery/café has a long patisserie counter, chandeliers, and numerous café tables. The fourth floor of this reopened wing (on the site of the former Emporium that closed down many years ago) is markedly more upscale than the eateries on the concourse (i.e., basement) level. However, as regular readers well know by now, that doesn’t necessarily translate to decent espresso.

Entry to Cocola SF The Cocola décor - de rigeur for the 4th floor mall eateries

Using a new three-group Rancilio, they produce an espresso with a very thin layer of light brown crema. It has the classic Peerless coffee diluted ashy bitterness for a flavor, and yet it is not overextracted (it has a modest pour size). The barista is relative skilled here but cannot compensate for all the quality factors that set this place back. (If you follow the Peerless link, you’ll notice a decent correlation between places that use Peerless beans and poor espresso.)

Actually a bit disappointing when compared with their original Santana Row location in San Jose.

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Cocola's dedicate espresso prep area The Cocola espresso