Thursday, April 05, 2018

Germantown Espresso Bar

Subject: Germantowan Espresso Bar
Location visited: Philadelphia, PA
WiFi?: yes
Rating: 6+ [see key]

Two decades ago, I would argue that Philadelphia really only had a handful of neighborhoods worth traversing. Now in 2018, there exists so many vibrant parts of Philly and yet, many breathtaking portions of the city are still overlooked or missed by most people. One such area is Germantown, a neighborhood as old as the Revolution (the site of the Battle of Germantown in 1777) and full of charming architecture and beautiful homes. Currently riding a rejuvenating wave of local improvements, there are many reasons to detour out to Germantown to sample the changes.

One such recent addition residing on the Maplewood Mall (a small pedestrian-oriented street which is due for a major facelift this year) is a reputable coffee shop called Germantown Espresso Bar. Nestled in a two-story venue, this cozy cafe is a welcome caffeinated presence, bringing quality beans to the local area. Showing up one afternoon, I got a chance to see the place firsthand after hearing much good in their regard. The shop has both a front and backdoor entrance, with some ground floor seating and the beverage counter in between. Upstairs is a large open space with a piano and plenty of room, perfect for small performances and open mic nights. 

As for coffee, they offer a rotating selection of coffee roasters. The day of my visit, I ordered an espresso of Concave's Finish Shape and a pourover of a Colombian single origin from North Virginia's Caffe Amouri. The espresso, pulled short with brown crema, smacked of lemon candy, cocoa, ginger, peach, croissant and a little arugula, proving bright and sweet. The pourover also made for a delightful infusion, launching sweet, sumptuous notes of almond cookie, molasses, gala apple, nutmeg, birch beer and raisin in a medium body. 

After conversing with the barista at length about the area and the shop, I sadly had an appointment to go sit in eastbound traffic. Thus, adding excellent customer service to their credit, the Germantown Espresso Bar proved every bit a gem as I had hoped. If you're in the area or passing through, definitely take a small detour for an excellent cup of coffee in a splendid Germantown cafe. 

These wonderful folks made this visit possible in part. Make sure to check them out!


Daniel said...

Hi Bill! I ran across your blog and was captured by the vivid description of the tasting notes of the espresso & pourover you had at Germantown Espresso Bar. Seeing you are a Coffee connoisseur, I wanted to reach out to see if you would be interested in receiving a sample of our Single Origin Colombian Coffees and collaborating somehow.

Please let me know if this is something that would interest you! You may reach me at


John Hickey said...

We just checked out the Germantown Espresso bar. Very friendly folks, and very neighborhood-oriented. They've got the space very pleasant inside and out - great color. We're interested in the open mic every 2nd and 4th Thursday night. The Maplewood Mall is still dug up (as of Feb. 14 when I'm writing this) but you can get there from parking at Greene Street or on Germantown Avenue. When Maplewood Mall work is done, it will be a lovely place.