What's a Coffee Commentary?
Subject: Coffee Works
Location visited: Voorhees, NJ
Free WiFi ? : yes
Rating: 4+ [see key]
A sad fact about southern NJ is that between Collingswood and Trenton, few decent coffee & tea establishments exist. In fact, in my hometown area of Cinnaminson, I can't think of a single place around me that I would flock to get a good cup of coffee. I call this area the "land of desolation."
Now Voorhees isn't tremendously close to my house nor is it north of Collingswood (it's more east) but it's home to one of the few decent coffee establishments remotely near the "land of desolation". Coffee Works is situated in the Ritz 16 plaza, a very strategic spot I'm sure they sing about when they close up shop.
They roast their own coffee (always a plus) and usually do a good job, though sometimes the coffee goes south. A friend of mine commented that a couple times he went in, the big glass bins of coffee were looking a little stale and oily, and I can remember a couple times trying the coffee and it tasting a little decrepit. Also, roasting your own beans comes with the burden of roasting them to the right darkness, and it was here that I first had under-roasted coffee. But I think it's safe to say theses were probably isolated incidents (but always keep an eye out...)
The espresso is pretty good (a blend of their own as well) and they seem to employ well-trained baristas, which I think is what keeps people coming back (along with the fact that it encroaches on the "land of desolation"). The tea was an odd name that I can't remember, but it looked good (?) and the chai I did not see.
So if you're in the area or in the "land of desolation" towards the south, you should stop by.
I would like to alter my earlier comment from "well-trained baristas" to "decently-trained baristas." I either have had the unfortunate luck of stopping in when new baristas are working or they just have bad days when I'm there, for decently-pulled espresso seems more a rarity then a usual occurence...