Sunday, June 24, 2012

CC: Toby's Estate

Subject: Toby's Estate 
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Free WiFi ? : yes
Rating: 6+ [see key]

Back when I first became fanatical about coffee back in 2005, I noticed that Australia seemed to have a lot going on with specialty coffee. Ever since, I've kept a bit of a peripheral eye on happenings down under, hoping silently that one day I could save enough loot to make a full fledged trip to the wonderful land of Oz. 

Yet one need not traverse halfway around the globe to sample Australian coffee culture. When I went to London a year or so ago, I couldn't help but notice the indelible mark the Australians and Kiwis were leaving on the London scene. In a lesser sense, but all the while growing, NYC has been getting its fair share of the influence. Looking to one of the more notable of the Aussie coffee developments, in beginning of 2012, one of the finer coffee operations of Australia set up its North American flagship in none other then Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

Toby's Estate is a coffee operation that seems nicely represented in their home continent, where many major cities seem to be brimming with locales where you can pick up a cup or bag of their coffee. Recently, the operation made landfall in lovely Brooklyn in a huge grey brick building with lots of space. While the outside boasts a clean look with large windows, the interior is a vaulted room of warmth, with large shelves boasting curios and merchandise as well as a large seating area with substantial furniture. 

Stepping up to the efficiently running coffee counter, I ordered an espresso of their Bedford Blend and a pourover of their Ethiopian Yirgacheffe, both of which were served with great cheer. The espresso, pulled short with a light marbled crema, smacked of sweet lemons, cocoa, nutmeg, pepper, cane sugar and sourdough; while not too acidic, it held a predominant brightness and sweetness. The pourover of Ethiopian Yirgacheffe delivered a resoundingly delicious brew that rang of milk, chocolate, fluffy biscuit, apple, citron and a bit of seaweed; a hardy coffee with a smooth, medium body.

Needless to say, I had a bonzer experience all around. While it's not exactly a trip to the land of wonder, it's the next best thing so if you happen to be in Williamsburg or nearby, offer Toby's Estate a visit.


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