Coffee & Treats in New York City


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  • Serendipity 3
    Frrrozen Hot Chocolate. It seems like a contradiction at first, something that defies the laws of beverage physics. Yet it's that very drink that has long defined Serendipity 3, an Upper East Side dessert destination since 1954. In a business profile for New York magazine, Hal Rubenstein summed up his thoughts on the signature treat—"It's like riding the Cyclone and giving a hickey: You have to do it at least once in your life." That frozen beverage, or "frrrozen" beverage as it's fittingly called here, complements a full lineup of desserts: apple pie, fresh fruit sundaes, and ice cream crepes just to name a few. Serendipity 3 even holds the Guinness World Record for the world's most expensive dessert. Their Golden Opulence Sundae covers rich Tahitian vanilla bean ice cream in 23-karat edible gold leaf and other rich and exotic ingredients. The dessert, which must be ordered 48 hours in advance, comes with a bill for $1,000. The shop's setting echoes its whimsical menu. Stained glass Tiffany lampshades and funky decor—like a giant skeleton key that hangs from the ceiling—offset the whitewashed walls of a Manhattan townhouse. The location has seen its fair share of famous faces over the years, including President Bill Clinton, and regulars have passed decades enjoying country meatloaf and hamburgers topped with chili. Of course, Serendipity 3's desserts remain the star, and the shop sells many items for customers to take home, including hot chocolate mix and hot fudge sauce.
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    225 E 60th St.
    New York, NY US
  • Sanctuary T
    While working long hours as an investment banker, Dawn Cameron often found herself dreaming of tea—of the brightness of the mint, the calmness of the chamomile, and the crispness of the matcha green. Her world was a portrait of the high-paced New York work environment, thrumming with caffeinated coffee junkies, screaming phones, and lost carrier pigeons. Seeking respite and finding none readily available, Dawn created her own: Sanctuary T. Surrounded by the cork-paneled walls of the tranquil, sunlit dining room, her guests perch on woven chairs and wooden stools, sipping more than 70 available varieties of tea. To ensure fresh flavors, tea gurus bag each serving by hand. When explaining this process to reporters from Metromix, Dawn explained, "there's a fullness to the [teas'] flavor. When machines process the teabag, you lose that character." Deep in the kitchen, chefs whip up innovative dishes that pair well with well-steeped beverages including tea-infused specialty cocktails lauded by reporters from the New York Post. Behind the bar, mixologists preside over extensive beer and wine lists that earned Sanctuary T designation as a Top Beer and Wine Bar from the raconteurs at Shecky's Nightlife. Shecky's writers also heaped praise on the bar's specialty cocktails, which they referred to approvingly as both "holistic" and "trippy".
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    337B W Broadway
    New York, NY US
  • Sullivan Street Bakery
    Sullivan St. Bakery Jim Lahey may have set out to shape stone and clay, but—to the delight of just about everybody else—dough was the medium he was destined to mold. While studying sculpture in Italy, Lahey became invested in the art of Italian bread baking, and brought that passion and a hand-cultivated wild yeast back to the kitchens of New York. There, he developed an innovative no-kneading technique of bread making that spawned a revolution in artisanal breads, thanks to a recipe spotlighted by ¬¬New York Times food critic Mark Bittman. Since then, critics from sources as diverse as Bon Appétit and the Martha Stewart Show have praised him between bites of his sought-after loaves. At Sullivan St. Bakery, the wild alchemy of Jim’s oven-teasing ways is on full display. The filone, a dark loaf prepared with mature fermentation and coated with wheat bran, gives off nutty and sour flavors, while the pane pugliese's lingering caramel aftertaste could convince a swarm of bees to surrender their hive so that their honey could broach its soft interior webbing. Panini and pizza are also available, gracing the same breads that made Jim famous, as well as signature bomboloni Italian doughnuts, with cores of vanilla bean custard or seasonal fruit fillings bursting through sugar-powdered shells.
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    236 9th Ave
    New York, NY US
  • Kossar's Bialys
    You wouldn't have found freeze-dried onions, automatic ovens, or bagel-making robots in Kossar's Bialys back in 1937, so why would you find them there now? The bakers here prefer to do things the old fashioned way—and they might be on to something. Besides claiming the title of the oldest bialy bakery in the nation, Kossar's has been frequently praised by publications ranging from Newsweek to Saveur, and, most recently, was named one of New York's top five bagel shops by The Huffington Post. So what exactly does it mean to "do things the old fashioned way"? For Kossar's, it means doing things by hand. That includes mixing dough from high-gluten flour, brewers yeast, salt, and freshly ground onions, shaping each bialy into its signature ring, and spacing each one perfectly onto a wooden peel. From there, the only thing left to do is bake the bialys to golden-brown perfection in an authentic brick oven. The same care goes into the creation of the shop's bagels—kettle boiled, of course, and made with pure malt syrup instead of sugar—as well as its other specialties, which include bulkas, pletzels and sesame sticks. And, as you might expect from a place so fiercely dedicated to tradition, each Kosser's bialy and bagel is handmade under strict, rabbi-supervised kosher specifications.
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    367 Grand St
    New York, NY US
  • Fika
    One of the highest-rated restaurants in New York, Fika has a casual atmosphere with a deeply flavorful menu that features coffee. It's an ideal choice for guests that want excellent quality and an excellent waitstaff. Streetwear attire is acceptable, so feel free to come as you are. Also, though the prices are considered to be lower than average, you aren't going to sacrifice any quality. In fact, you should be able to enjoy a good meal for $11 or $12, and can probably get in and out for $8 if you try. When you get there, think about ordering the macchiato, the iced coffee, or the croissants, as all three stand out. In addition to its convenient take-out menu, the restaurant even provides catering for events around town. Or, if you just want to stop by for a beverage, the restaurant has a good selection at its bar. A highly-regarded spot for breakfast in Kips Bay, a visit to Fika is definitely worthwhile. The service, in general, is "friendly" and "good." More specifically, the mocha is touted as "rich" and "fantastic," Also, its coffee shop is known to be "fantastic," while the design is "beautiful," and the employees are "friendly" and "pleasant." Visitors to the restaurant have the ability to park nearby on the street. Would you rather ride there? Bike parking is also provided.
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    407 Park Avenue South
    New York, NY US
  • Ciao For Now
    For the perfect jolt of caffeine, look no further than East Village's Ciao For Now. Ciao For Now is a fantastic spot to indulge and with no low-fat options, you'll need to save the diet for another day. Find time to peruse the wine list here — Ciao For Now offers a variety of drink options. Load up the mini-van and bring the kids to Ciao For Now — they'll love the menu and scene here as much as mom and dad. Got the whole gang with you? Ciao For Now is a great pick for large parties. Take it nice and easy at Ciao For Now, where casual dress is the rule of the day. If you're hoping to make a smashing impression at your next soiree, you can also have Ciao For Now cater for you. Homebodies can take advantage of Ciao For Now's delivery and take-out options. Street parking is provided for those dining at the coffee shop's East 12th Street location. Or, if you prefer, leave the car at home and catch public transportation at nearby stops at 1 Ave. (L) and 3 Ave. (L). A night out here can be a bit pricey, so prepare to shell out a bit more. Ciao For Now accepts all major credit cards, including Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express. The coffee shop serves lunch and dinner, but it's the brunch menu that draws the most rave reviews from patrons.
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    523 East 12th Street
    New York, NY US

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