Isn't this great, they stamp the logo on the cup?
As you know, I'm a loyal Joe - The Art of Coffee girl, but every now and then I like to try something new. So when M. came back one afternoon and said we needed to check out Stumptown Coffee Roasters at the Ace Hotel, I knew it was a must. This is a man who is particular about coffee and where his coffee is served.
I had already read about the Ace and put it's hotel bar on my list of "Places to Try". This is where I come clean about my obsession with NYC food blogs. I read alot of blogs about new openings. Alot. If you want to know about the new restaurant or new bar in the outer edges of Manhattan, I've probably read about it. Granted, I will not have gone there and may never go there, but I know about it and can probably tell you the menu or who hangs out there.
The hotel itself is in the no man's land of Broadway and 29th Street. After mapping the walk (it's 0.6 miles away, versus 0.4 to Joe), we set out. And the trip was worth it. It's a great space with full windows out onto 29th street. The baristas are dressed in a smart, hip way. I expected an English accent when I was asked for my order, but that didn't happen.
Stumptown was started in Portland, Oregon, and it's for real coffee people from what I hear and saw (the bags list the latitude and longitude of where the beans are grown). Food & Wine named it the Best Boutique Roaster. There are no flavorings or flavored coffee (yes, I'm the one person who likes DD's Blueberry iced coffee). The coffee is French Press in small batches. I twittered where I was and got an immediate "there's a Stumptown in Manhattan?" response. This is actually the first Stumptown establishment on the east coast; there are a few NY coffee houses that serve Stumptown coffee, though.
I am a Splenda and low-fat milk in my coffee girl, but they had sugar and cream out so I figured they must know that's what my coffee needs. I went with it.
It was a delicious cup of coffee. We got one on the house because we had to wait for one of the coffees. We probably had to wait 30 seconds. That is good customer service.
I thought the lighting above the coffee bar was neat. I will give credit to the NYT for noting it's hand blown milk glass in their article (where the also mention the tavertine floors and walnut bar trimmed in brass). These are a few details I didn't pick up on but are interesting to note.
I love coffee shops with a standing bar along the outside window. Here is the sun shining in around 8 am:
We actually retired to the Ace Hotel lobby to enjoy our brew. We decided this is a great place to come and enjoy the atmosphere with our coffee, but if we need to finish some reading (we get a few weekly mags here and it's overwhelming) we decided Joe is a better option.
I'm excited to check out the hotel bar and The Breslin when it opens (the chefs are of The Spotted Pig fame). The Ace Hotel was actually The Breslin hotel before it's new life. The interior goes for a modern and vintage look (or bohemian and sophisticated as the website describes it).
I'd love to stay here as a guest, but hard to justify when I live here!