Coffee in Boston: Go Independent

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Posted September 13, 2013 by Sarah Stanley in Downtown Boston
BCCC Coffee

Looking for a flourishing cultural corner? Check out independent coffee in Boston. (It’s not just for Cambridge and Somerville.) Yes, our very own downtown Boston boasts plenty of joe-brewing, Wi-Fi–touting, pastry-baking boutique establishments. These spots are far more intimate than those go-to chains populating almost every corner of the planet.

For example, take the Boston Common Coffee Company. Let’s start with the expected: Their coffee is heavenly. And why wouldn’t it be? BCCC roasts its own beans, offering a full range of blends. What you may not expect, however, are their cookies. Oh my goodness, their cookies. Dare I say it, they’re the best chocolate chip cookies that have ever existed in the history of baking. While this proclamation doesn’t come with any sort of official backing, let’s just say that I’ve eaten lots of cookies in my day. And these thick, always-gooey, just-the-right-amount-of-buttery wonders put any other chipper to shame. Preface one with a toasty BCCC panini, or pair one with a chai latte. Or just inhale one sans ceremony. There’s no wrong way to achieve sweet ecstasy here.

Want to drink the best coffee in the world? Thinking Cup is where you go. The shop’s brew is from Stumptown Coffee. Based in Portland, Oregon, the company has received “Best of” awards from NPR, The New York Times, Food & Wine Magazine, and USA Today. In addition to serving some of the most winning coffee in Boston, Thinking Cup boasts a seriously formidable portfolio of baked goods, from French macaroons to slices of decadent cake. As for their dining menu, let’s just say, the place could likely survive on the sales of their beyond-delicious sandwiches alone. Two words: Barcelona Bliss. Trust me. Order it.

Next up: Flat Black Coffee Company. Curious about the name? It’s an Australian term for espresso. And this spot doesn’t take theirs lightly. They are committed to micro-roasting the world’s finest, single-origin beans at their 5 locations (including 3 in the financial district). Currently, they boast 20 different types, hailing from all over the globe. Yes, Flat Black has already done the coffee-sourcing legwork. So savor one seriously stand-apart brew in the comfort of your very own neighborhood.

And now for your workweek’s Martha’s Vineyard fix. Espresso Love‘s roots are in Edgartown, where the first shop was opened in 1992. Seeing opportunity in the city, owner Carol McManus’s son TJ opened an Espresso Love location on Broad Street. The spot serves up all the deliciousness their Vineyard location is known for, from coffee to sandwiches. And with menu items such as the Katama Chicken and the Chappy, island life isn’t that far off.

For your next coffee fix, take it local. And that feel-good rush? It isn’t just the caffeine.

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