Peixoto - Chandler, Arizona
11 West Boston Street, Suite #6
Chandler, Arizona 85225
Peixoto (prounouned "pay-sho-tow") is located in the heart of downtown Chandler in the south eastern part of the Phoenix area. My biggest regret is that they didn't exist eight years ago when I was still living in this part of town. However, I still think that the 45 minute drive is well worth it.
I'm still relatively new to exploring great coffee. Up until about a year ago, I was perfectly happy ordering my tall black Pike Place and occasional soy latte. They say ignorance is bliss, and they would be right. I was ruined from the moment I took my first sip of my first cortado. This happened to be at Peixoto. My husband and I were having dinner with friends at our favorite sushi spot in town, and the sushi chef (who also happens to be a friend of ours) recommended this little coffee spot nearby. My husband works in coffee and was excited to try it out. It was love at first sip.
The story behind the Peixoto brand is another reason I made this my top pick. They are one of the handful of coffee shops in the states that have complete control of their coffee, literally from crop to cup. Their beans are harvested from a plantation in southeast Brazil that has been in the Peixoto family for over a hundred years. When they say their coffee is single origin, they mean it. It is sourced from one plantation, one farmer. They then roast these beans directly in their store. You don't have to live in Arizona to get your hands on their coffee. They have added the convenience of an online store so you can have their single origin beans shipped to your home, wherever that may be.
They offer a simple menu that really showcases the flavor of their beans, seasonal specialties (they just released their spring menu, which includes a lavender latte!!) as well as bags of beans, so you can take the experience home with you. They even offer classes where you can learn how to master the art of the pour over. The baristas at Peixoto are the nicest people to ever serve you coffee that doesn't have your miss spelled name on the cup. They know their stuff, but don't make you feel like an idiot if you don't know the difference between Hario and Chemex.
Peixoto partners up with local treat makers around the valley, and have special days dedicated to featuring certain ones. On one of my many trips down there, they had a local shop making the cutest and yummiest s'more concoctions you have ever had. Think graham cracker crust and homemade melt in your mouth marshmallows. The only thing missing was a campfire.
So, if you ever are in the Phoenix area, and looking for that perfect sip, and maybe someone to help you finish your float (call me), I wholeheartedly recommend Peixoto.
Slate Coffee Bar - Ballard, Washington5413 6th Ave NW
Seattle, WA 98107
You can probably already tell that the coffee shop I picked is much different than Jacqueline's! Style wise, they're almost polar opposites. But I think this place reflects what the real Seattle is all about. You will not find tourists here, but that doesn't mean that if you are one you shouldn't visit. On the contrary!
This is their first location of three, it's off the beaten path in a neighborhood a little ways away from the main Ballard strip (which I highly recommend going to, it has awesome shops/restaurants and it's a great place to spend the day.) This place is tiny, like super tiny. It's got a chill midcentury modern vibe and it's a really nice place to catch up with a friend or just go alone with a good book.
When you come in, they ask if this is your first time, if so they invite you to sit down and they'll come to you to order. "Say whaaa?" you may say. This is different then a lot of places around here, which can be quite impersonal, gruff even. Then they explain the menu, so newbie's know what's up and when you order you don't feel dumb.
But it is sooooooo gooooood!
First is the espresso, the shot was smooth and slightly acidic. Second is the steamed milk, its a little odd just drinking steamed milk on is own but its nonetheless delicious. I wrote in my notes that it "tasted like clouds" ...wow Skyler, you're a poet. Last is the shot and steamed milk together, normally I prefer sugar in my latte, but I don't need any here. It's balanced and lovely.
When we got our drinks, the barista explained where everything was sourced from and how it was made. The focus here is on the coffee itself and he highlighted the different nuances of flavor in this particular roast. Coffee nerds love this place.
The last time I was there I chatted with one of the Barista's, Libby, a little more about Slate, blogging and the Pacific Northwest. She was awesome! When you travel, try talking to the people that serve you. They are also humans with personalities and preferences and they can help you find local gems you may not have known about otherwise.
My friend ordered a drip, with a side of steamed milk and simple syrup.
Guys, I was quite concerned she wasn't going to like this place. Her ideal coffee situation usually includes flavors not known to nature and chocolate syrup. But surprise to me, she loved it. Success!
Slate is first and foremost a coffee bean roaster, so you can also buy their beans and enjoy them at your leisure. I love leisure.
In typical Seattle fashion, it was absolutely dumping rain that day. But that didn't stop us! We shall have fun no matter the weather, so you can suck it Winter.
I couldn't help but also order their hot chocolate. Made from house-made mix, raw sugar and hot water. Wait, hot water? This can't be good. Nope, you'd be wrong, it was divine. My friend loved it too. Not too sweet and I didn't go into a cocoa coma afterwards.
(They have other locations as well, one of which is right next to the Neptune Theater, which is super cool. Check out that stained glass tho, omg
Check out their Instagram! and their website.)