Monthly Archives: March 2014

Jacques Torres

I recently had one of the most amazing and delicious weekends. I rented a place in DUMBO, Brooklyn on airbnb and spent the weekend connecting with friends and with myself. After treating myself to lunch, I headed straight to Jacques Torres for some chocolate and a mocha.


Taste: 4

So I think I drank hot chocolate. I ordered a mocha latte for sure, but I tasted no signs of espresso. Instead, I tasted rich, thick, decadence. Was this made with heavy cream? This ‘mocha’ tasted almost like a hot chocolate I had while in Paris; the Paris drink was so think I could rest my spoon on top of the hot chocolate. To give this mocha a higher rating, I would have loved to taste more equality between the cocoa, milk, and espresso (if there truly was any to be had).

Appearance: 1

Sorry Jacques, but this is not the most appealing ‘mocha’ I’ve tried. This actually just looks like melted chocolate, which should have been my first clue. I would have loved to see some effort here — some latte art, perhaps? Or at least fill my cup up to the top with ‘mocha’ deliciousness.



Ambiance: 5

Jacques Torres gets one rating for offering free chocolate samples – at the register they usually have 3 choices, so of course, I tried all three. They appear to create their confections on site – you can peek into their bakery right next door. I was advised to try the Dark Bark, so I picked up one two to go. Reviews mention the Wicked Fun chocolate, ice cream sandwiches, and chocolate chip cookies as must tries. Thankfully, I’ll be heading back to Brooklyn in April (… and May) so I will grab some to try for myself. In retrospect, I would only purchase chocolate from Jacques Torres and forget the drinks, as my mocha was sub par. This is definitely not a place to sit and study — there are about 3 tables, so this is more of a grab-and-go type of shop. Speaking of studying, UC Davis is considering offering a degree in coffee — check out the UC Davis Coffee Center. I knew I loved California!



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Posted by on March 23, 2014 in New York


BWE kafe


On a recent trip into the city, I stayed with my good friend, the newly-engaged Ashley, in Hoboken, NJ. I took a break from our indulgent weekend to enjoy a mocha latte at BWE Kafe. I spent an hour at BWE with my mocha and my journal; I’ve been journaling a lot lately. I was not so impressed with the mocha at BWE, but I was happy to support this company. I discovered that even though BWE is a relatively new coffee shop (founded in 2013), it is making the world a better place, one mocha at a time. BWE exclusively serves La Colombe coffee and espresso, a company based out in Philadelphia. La Colombe supports organizations such as Love for Haiti and Coffee for Water, so in essence, my mocha contributed towards education for students in Haiti and clean drinking water in Haiti. How cool is that?

Appearance: 5

Sweet, symmetrical, loving little mocha heart. Minus points for not serving this with a saucer (and a spoon!). Minus points for having the most basic mug ever created. Plus points because while this mug is extremely basic, it reminds me of one of my favorite mugs at home. My home based mug was stolen from camp, and looks similar to this mug, just much bulkier and more Maine-y. I love it because it brings back great summer camp memories and it’s just a sturdy, rugged mug.


Taste: 4

This mocha was the perfect temperature – I usually order my mocha’s extra hot, but did not even need to do that here at BWE. Most cafes that use syrup in their mochas to not appear to mix that into the drink, and BWE was no exception. I’ve learned to give my mocha a stir in order to taste all of the flavors, so I did that here. Even so, this left my last few sips too sweet to finish. I highly recommend mixing the cocoa into the espresso and milk for a more equal mixture.

Ambiance: 5

BWE is a pretty nice little cafe. There is plenty of seating, both inside and out (when warm enough, and yes, I am so ready for spring). The feel inside is so much more neighborhood-y than a typical Starbucks. BWE’s community board boasts signs of an open mic night ‘Hoboken Sppoken’, and reviews rave about this weekly coming together of neighbors. During my hour at BWE, I saw people of all ages were enjoying a coffee and/or a pastry. There was a couple facetiming with a family member, a young man editing his presentation on a laptop, and a couple enjoying an early evening conversation over coffee. Overall, BWE has a great location, walking distance to lots of shops, stores, and restaurants. It offers good quality coffee, but nothing special. Next time I am in Hoboken I want to try one of their pastries — those looked pretty delectable. I would love it is BWE had more comfortable seating options, like comfier chairs or a couch. I probably would have stayed longer if I could get cozy.

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Posted by on March 3, 2014 in New Jersey