Monday, June 9, 2008

river maiden and the clover

I stumbled into a coffee shop in the Heights that I've never been to. River Maiden at 602 Devine Road. They serve Stumptown, apparently one of only two places on this side of the river.

More interestingly they have a Clover 1s machine. They are one of only a few hundred places around the world that have one, and it's likely that no more independent shops will get them... because Starbucks just bought the company.

A Clover uses a different brewing technique and only makes one cup of brewed coffee at a time. Reviewers say it makes the best cup of coffee available—of course, depending on what grounds you toss into it. I went with the barista's suggestion on what coffee to use and 60 seconds later I was holding a very fresh cup of coffee. It reminded me a lot of the pure Kona I had in Hawaii—extremely balanced. Too balanced, actually, just like the Kona. It was so smooth it was boring. I think it's a matter of picking a bold enough coffee so next time I'm going to try whatever is strongest. If it fails me again I'm going to say Clover is a no-go. Maybe it will fare better with Starbucks' less-than-par coffee?

A cup of Clover-made coffee here goes for about $2.50 with tax.

The atmosphere at River Maiden was much better than I anticipated in the Heights and both baristas seemed very well versed in the trade. Free WiFi and a very short distance from my pad. Offers some reasonable competition to Savona for my business!

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