BY ELENA MANCINI
Located in the heart of bohemian trendiness, stands D’Espresso, a sleek and shiny non-descript espresso bar with a decor-concept that could be exported to any international airport throughout the globe. While cold and characterless spaces are generally an immediate turn off for me, my taste buds and coffee-conditioned brain cannot resist the prospect of the being confronted with rich, robust flavors of an espresso done right. And since a name as straightforward as D’Espresso evokes such a specialized approach to the beverage, I could not simply walk away without giving the place a try.
Employing high quality Danesi beans, D’Espresso baristas delivered just that: a distinctly satisfying espresso that was muscular with balanced acidity and a wondrously thick patina of crema that lingered on the palate long after it was consumed, and served at the requisite hot temperature in preheated heavy pre-heated porcelain, I could not all too passionately begrudge its straightforward, no-frills to hospitality approach–to the point of lacking restroom facilities– for the two sips of heaven they deliver. Why? Espressos this good simply don’t come by all that often outside of this beverage’s motherland, and even there one word of mouth wisdom and discernment are in order.
Happily, D’Espresso’s espresso accolades can be extended to its cappuccino. Made with the same Danesi beans and frothed into a hot meringue of milk and espresso, the cappuccino offers the perfect entree into the day and antidote to afternoon lulls. The under $5 double-shot skim caps that I’ve enjoyed there have been typically strong without excessive bitterness and made with a tight creamy froth that held past the quarter mark of the cup. As with the espresso, the cappuccino was served hot in pristine white, preheated Danesi porcelain.
For non-espresso drinkers, there’s little point of my recommending this place to you, but if you’re joining your espresso loving friends, the coffee bar also serves an array of Italian sodas and cold beverages.
There is also an assortment of tasty small sweets, danishes and baked goods to accompany the espresso experience and small tables and bar seating, which easily encourage a second round of these eminently encore-worthy espressos and cappuccinos.