This started as a small, Sonoma-based chain café and roastery. It has since grown, deservedly, due to its popularity. There are two locations in Healdsburg (the other being the roasting plant, for Phil Anacker‘s finest, plus take-out-only coffee at 419 Center St.), one in Santa Rosa, and one soon planned for downtown Napa. The locals like to call it “The Goat.”

It's 'The Goat'! Inside The Goat - much brighter than before

This location originally boasted a very modern design, with angular counters, spot lighting, and a mostly dark, empty space. In recent years they have since softened the design a lot where it is now brighter and friendlier to joe coffee drinker. It still has tall counter seating, several indoor tables, and some benches on the front sidewalk. The baristas are young professionals with a little attitude, but the coffee backs it up against their Healdsburg competition.

The Goat's La Marzocco FB/70 The Goat's coffee menu

They serve espresso from a cherry red, three-group La Marzocco FB/70 with a dark brown crema of average thickness (it’s slimmed down some in recent years). Rich, dark, and smooth, with a sign of some grounds in the pour. Served more appropriately lukewarm, rather than scalding hot. The body has lightened up a little, but it’s still a great cup. Mellow and smooth flavor that mixes herbal and buttery tastes, with a slightly sweet finish. They’ve also replaced their Homer Laughlin cups with those from Espresso Supply.

One of the best things going for coffee in the North Bay and Wine Country, though they do leave the door open somewhat for potential competitors to top them.

Read the updated review of Flying Goat Coffee @ 324 Center St., in Healdsburg.

The Goat's espresso and macchiato A Goat espresso close-up

UPDATE: June 2, 2008
In response to some of the quality changes at this location, we published a Trip Report Redux of Flying Goat Coffee @ 324 Center St. in Healdsburg.