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Coffee Gallery

January 22, 2009


A few weeks ago found us in Haleiwa – which deserves a post of its own, but I have no photographic evidence to speak of – the day was cloudy and I was not in a photographic mood. Late in the afternoon in Haleiwa I found myself craving a caffeine kick, and the family needed a break from trolling the boutiques. I asked a surf shop owner where one might procure a cup of the black stuff, and he pointed us toward Coffee Gallery.

Entry to the shop was full of promise, a blast of fresh roasted beans hitting me in the face like an angry woman. I immediately launched into a diatribe about how one of the ways in which Starbucks lost its way was by automating everything, which caused the aroma to vanish from the customer experience. But here, here was authenticity! A raw, handmade, organic, lived-in environment. I was so excited I decided to buy a mug.

Then I tasted the coffee.

Colossal letdown. A thin, watery, weak brew. It was like opening a bottle of red with a luscious bouquet that belies a bitter taste. At least it is comforting to know that I don’t have to drive all the way to Haleiwa for the best coffee on the island. So far, Coffee Talk, which I wrote about before, wins my prize for the best local cup.

Unfortunately, I am stuck with the mug.

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