Thursday, 11 October 2012

Silverbean

Scores:
Coffee: 13/20
Whole experience (cafe + coffee): 22/40
Bean: Sacred Grounds

Enmore is a little outside the box compared to your usual suburb, even if you pit it against its neighbour, Newtown, it stands as something a little different. It should be then of no surprise that you can, within this funky suburb, find some great characters and some interesting and different cafes.

Silverbean found on Enmore Road really does capture this, latching onto the rockabilly, Americana look and feel like there is no tomorrow. And to be honest would it work so well anywhere else? A somewhat windy morning brings me to check out this cafe I've long walked past.

Silverbean, before you walk in, has got instant street side cred found in the cafe's circa 1950's (I really have no idea) pick-up which is parked outside. Kinda cool.

Walking in, there was a real energy to the place. Staff chatted and joked among themselves, customers went all over the place like they owned it, and there was a great coffee smell. It all seemed to have a bit of a chaotic harmony working for it.

Having finally scored a seat inside, service was quick and  kinda friendly with a girl within about a minute or two coming over to me with a huge grin and asking me what I was after.

My typical 'just a ...' was interrupted with her explanation that all coffee for today was just $1 as it was the cafe's first birthday. Tempting me with this offer she also brought the food menu over. The food whilst looking great was balanced against my lack of wallet, so I had to say 'sorry, no'.

While waiting for my coffee I scoped out its customers. While I was expecting randoms, due to the cheap coffee, I was surprised to find it was more a celebration for regulars, who if you're interested where young-ish Newtown, Enmore types, less the chino type of person, more the old band tee kinda person.

My coffee came out soon after and it had a reasonable look to it. Heat was about as hot as milk should go, layering reasonable, and art nice, although the foam looked a little dry. All round a nice looking latte.

The aroma of the drink was reasonably simple, as you would expect from a PNG organic single origin. There was a dark coco or chocolate smell to the drink and the aroma led itself to having rather earthy associations.

Tasting wise, it was a drink with a noticeable (and surprising) depth to it (single origins are wonderful, but often find their limitations when milk is added to them), there were some disappointments to the drink though. While the initial flavour was quite pleasant with a nutty dark chocolate taste, the aftertaste had a slight metallic lingering feel to it, which was a bummer.

Letting it cool however, allowed more of the coffee to steep into the milk, bringing through that earthiness I found in the aroma, leaving me with a quite pleasant, somewhat acidic drink overall.

Unexpectedly, during this experience, after about 2 minutes of receiving my coffee I was asked to vacate my table within the next 10 to 15 minutes.  I explained to the guy (manager?) I had some friends coming, hinting at that perhaps he could help me find a new table. He walked off doing nothing to help.

Yes it's your birthday and yes at that point of time I was only having a coffee, but give me a helping hand if you want me to move, I did not really want to leave the cafe, but I felt, after this experience that I was just in the way and a liability.

Overall, there is much to like about Silverbean. I like that they are doing something different in the area, and have committed to it across all levels. Likewise I appreciate their unusual choice of the single origin. However, creating issues for any customer is never ideal, and not helping them solve an issue you’ve made, is a bit of a fail. For the record, I'll go back to Silverbean, but  more for the blog to ensure it’s fair rating, than for my regular Saturday morning coffee.

Scores:
1. Coffee score
Style (look and feel): 7/10
Experience (taste and smell): 6/10
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Coffee total: 13/20
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2. Cafe score
Style (what’s it feel like): Americana saloon
Cool?: 6/10
Service: 3/10 (waitress was a 6 in service, guy to told me to move 2)
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Cafe: 9/20
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Whole experience (coffee + cafe): 22/40



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