Friday, May 22, 2009

Coffee crawl finale: The Noshers have their say

To finish off the National Nosh's month-long investigative journalism series on independently owned coffee shops that are walking distance from my house, I present the following cross-Canada options, as suggested by enthusiastic followers of the Nosh (Noshheads? Noshers?) This is actually a photo of a great cafe in Tel Aviv, which just goes to show that the appeal of an afternoon coffee translates everywhere. 

Victoria: A new addition to the city's serious coffee culture, Street Level Espresso's hot bevies are served with a glass of house-carbonated water to cleanse the palate. Habit Cafe and Culture, next to Mole on Pandora, is exactly what it sounds like.

Vancouver: Even thought Caffe Artigiano has been on a bit of an expansion blitz, quality has not faltered. And the last time I was there my latte foam artist drew a fairly accurate depiction of a monkey in a turban in my milk suds. At Cafe Medina you'd be a fool not to order a wee, sweet Belgian waffle with your cappuccino.  

Toronto: Balzac's boasts industrial chic surrounds and house-roasted beans. Great almond croissants too (they're also in Stratford). The Pantry actually carries Balzac's coffee, and you can also stock up on potted foie and fancy jams, or grab a fresh steak and Gorgonzola sandwich to go. 

Ottawa: Planet Coffee's boho clientele in the Byward Market isn't enough to stop one from enjoying their lemon cake, while Bridgehead is all about organic, shade-grown, fairly traded coffees, teas, healthier snacks and cool surrounds.

Montreal: For many Noshers, Olive et Gourmando is your all-star cafe in Canada. Mine too. 

Halifax: In a city overrun with Timmy's and Second Cups, Steve-O-Reno's is a beacon in the morning mist. But when I lived there my regular stomping ground was the Trident. I still long for their outsize lattes, homemade iced tea and oat cakes. 

If I didn't mention your favourite cafe in your hometown, I'm sorry, but it's because you didn't write in. That's how that works. 

Please note: I will be out of town on assignment for a couple of days, so recipe Monday will most likely be Recipe Tuesday next week. Have a great weekend! 

No comments: