Food & Drink
DRINK: Have You Had Boston’s Best Coffee?
by Ted Karczewski
I can’t say that I have the skills to cultivate top-tier coffee beans, nor can I honestly admit to understanding the full complexity of the range of flavors found in the beverage, but I know what I like, and I know where in Boston offers the best coffee around.
The city is known for many things – its overwhelming sports audience, vibrant nightlife and boat shoes, but also for its unique cafes. If you’re the type of person who wakes up Saturday morning and needs to grab a quick bite to eat and a latte to get through the day, there are a few places that you will enjoy.
Of course, I can’t tell you about every hot spot in the Hub, as I don’t have the time and I won’t be able to retain your attention long enough. But what I can tell you is that Thinking Cup, located on 165 Tremont Street, is a place with a unique way of providing you with your favorite drinks.
Tremont Street is one of the busiest and largest avenues in the Greater Boston area, and you can easily walk past Thinking Cup if you don’t keep your eyes open. Situated between two residencies, this coffee shop promotes itself subtly, with only a small sign, hanging from two chain links just above the doorway. Once you walk through the front door of the cafe, you immediately see that every booth, two-person table and barstool is occupied by a customer who, at one point, was as curious as you were before your first taste. While you might have to wait and creep to get the seat of your choice, people are often in and out in regular intervals.
The bar is where you’ll want to head to and place your order, but you will have to make it past the display cases full of cupcakes, specialty breads, cookies and various other treats. These food options range in price from $1.25 for a cookie to $4.95 for a hefty slice of cake. But if you’re here for breakfast, make sure you try one of their chocolate croissants, which oozes with fudge-like consistency, or the more basic breakfast sandwich with ham and cheese.
Beyond its friendly service and noisy surroundings, Thinking Cup seems to attract a specific crowd – those people who have learned that what Starbucks offers isn’t nearly as powerful as what real, organic coffee beans wield. In fact, if you’re a fan of innovative twists on time-old traditions, you need to try the Hazelnut Latte. This $4.00 beverage may seem like it comes with a high price tag for a small-sized drink, but upon first sip – when the hand-ground hazelnuts, steamed milk and espresso make their way into your mouth, you know it was worth the investment.
Thinking Cup serves Stumptown Coffee exclusively, which originates in Portland, Oregon, and has been named “Best Coffee in the World” by NPR, The New York Times, Food & Wine Magazine and USA Today – quite the reputation for a brand you may not have heard of before. Perhaps what makes Thinking Cup even more appealing is how each barista treats coffee like fine wine.
The beans have been handpicked for their aroma and flavor, which directly influence the taste you get when you go for that first and last sip. Whether you decide to go for the stellar Hazelnut Latte or stick to a traditional Americano, you know that what you’re served has proven time and time again that it’s the best of the best.
Step into Thinking Cup this weekend and start your morning off right. You may find, like many of today’s Boston residents, that the best coffee in town comes from a local cafe, not a chain or the office Keurig.
165 Tremont Street