I recently ventured out to Stable Cafe as part of my systematic attempt in trying coffee shops that are recommended for one reason or another… usually for good coffee, sometimes for its appearance. Fortunately, Stable Cafe was both. And they were kind enough to reserve a table for me and mine (turned out I was rollin’ 6 deep) outdoors since the weather was nice.
So I came prepared intestinally (stomach on empty) and mentally (researched the beans they serve), with my trigger finger ready on the camera shutter.
When I walked in, I noticed that the line was about 8-long. Not because of slow operations, but because it was a busy, bustling cafe with almost all indoor tables occupied. While waiting in line I noticed a wandering child whose dress appeared to be from a century past. I was glad they reserved a large table for me and my crew. Their courtyard felt like a bit of an escape from the busy streets of The Mission in San Francisco. I liked it.
Knowing that this was an entirely new brand of bean for me (De La Paz), I asked in advance what is recommended; each recommendation was espresso based (latte, cortado, cappuccino). Since I typically have drip coffee, I decided I would order that and a cortado. 🙂
My evaluation: a solid recommendation. If I were in the neighborhood I would totally go back. But I wouldn’t make an effort to go back specifically. Not because anything was wrong, in fact it is all good. I just think there is better for coffee. Stable Cafe provides a solid, well-rounded experience: good customer service, a cute setting, good coffee and good food.
- The drip coffee resembled somewhat of a blend of Ritual / Barefoot / FourBarrel in its brighter & lighter overall flavor and mouthfeel with a smooth finish. It tasted pleasant and I felt I didn’t need sugar or cream to enjoy it; a sign that it is really good coffee! Speaking of mouth feel, it resembled the texture you get when using a french press, though I didn’t see any grit at the bottom of my cup when I finished it.
- The cortado was really good. Like a cappuccino in size, but with a different sweetness in the milk (cappuccino has steamed milk while the cortado has warmed milk). I liked it and this is what I would order on my next visit.
I also got myself a croissant with cheese and ham, while others got the Pomba (toast, bacon, brie, egg in the hole). The croissant was good, as expected. I mean, it’s a buttery, carby, cheesy, savory bundle of warming goodness. However, I wondered if I missed out by not ordering the Pomba that everyone else got (but not because they have tried it previously; it was just happenstance).
Also, there was parking directly across the street. In San Francisco. In The Mission. During the peak brunch hour. Imagine that! Fortune smiled upon me that day.