What's does "CC" mean?
Location visited: Ottawa, ON
Free WiFi ? : yes
Rating: 4+ [see key]
Hitting a local spot for a meal doesn't always work out when visiting a city on a cold winter evening. The weather on a recent trip to Ottawa became a hurdle for my wife and I as we braved the raving winds for dinner. But determined to eat a good meal, our fortitude paid off, as we found mighty fine Mexican fare at Ahora Mexican Cuisine.
Next on the list (for me at least) was a decent cup of coffee. We ventured out into the cold on a shaky lead to a place nearby called Xpresso, apparently owned by the same people who own a local Indian restaurant called Shafali. We found the place soon after, with black signs (somewhat hard-to-see-in-the-night) and open windows. Inside there was lots of Indian art amidst a red modern decor and a cozy furniture.
The coffee comes from Reunion Island Coffee, a roaster out of Oakville, Ontario (though Xpresso's website claims they use Intelligentsia). I had the Ethiopian via drip, a light roast with blueberry, chianti and lemon throughout; a tremendously good, fruity cup of coffee with a medium body. The espresso, pulled medium/long despite asking for it short, had chocolate notes followed by a strong bitterness that had a developing salty facet as well as a milk-ish body (i.e. fair shots). The tea was free leaf and Xpresso also had beer and wine options.
Though the experience satisified my desire for some evening coffee, I felt the place had a lot of potential to be even greater. Never the less, if you're in town, give Xpresso a go go.