Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >
May 22, 2007 08:53 AM

Mud Truck vs. Starbucks

Forget about the fact that Starbuck has become the Walmart/Barnes & Noble of coffee houses and has driven out of business countless landmarked mom & pop cafes particularly in the Village. the Mud truck is simply better at half the price, n'est pas?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I find their drip coffee to be over-roasted, but not as bad as Starbucks. Their espresso is much better. There is a bit of inconsistency between the various locations, but in general, yes (oui), I will make a bee-line for the Mud truck when I am near one.

    1. Sometimes I have trouble with the MUD. Often times I just want half and half, and they end up steaming the milk and then putting it in...I think that changes it and makes it not quite so rich. Probably for most this would be an upgrade, but not for me. I also think that their beans have a "sweeter" flavor that I don't like quite as much as the Bux.

      But then there are other times when its awesome. So, i guess the bottom line would be that there's some inconsistency.

      2 Replies
      1. re: randymac88

        I'm pretty sure the barista wont mind if you request for your milk not to be steamed.

        1. re: DarthEater

          Well, usually I say "just some half and half" and they'll go ahead and just dump in the steamed before I can say otherwise. Yes, it would seem simple but for some reason it's more difficult that you might think. Maybe because I haven't had my coffee yet.

          Now regardless, not sure if anyone's tried 9th Ave Espresso (9th betw. C+D), its way, way, way above anything I've had in the east village when it comes to lattes and espresso drinks. By a mile.

      2. I ended up just not drinking coffee in america unless I have verified that the shop is really on a higher level. But I have never heard of this mud truck before, I will give it a shot

        4 Replies
        1. re: mellowyaelo

          mellowyaelo, I would try the actual Mud storefront first, which is on E 9th between 1st and 2nd Aves, closer to 2nd. But Mud is really just a funky coffee shop that pays more attention to coffee than most—it's not a place that's really religious about coffee.

          The trucks I know about are at Union Sq, Astor Pl, Sheridan Sq, and on Wall St near Pearl.

          1. re: Mazzer

            beware - the union square truck is kind of erratic in terms of presence. i'm never sure if it's going to be there, which is a bummer since i love their iced coffee.

            1. re: Mazzer

              thanks mazzer. I appreciate the advice. I am not like those holy grail of coffee searchers but I like to have a good cup in the morning and its tough to find here.
              thanks again

              1. re: mellowyaelo

                I'm not sure if they are the Holy Grail of Coffee but try the Roasting Plant on the Lower East Side. They are coffee worshipers and the beans are super-fresh, as they do their own roasting.


          2. I hate to say this because I want to love the Mud Truck. But I find the coffee too bitter. When I am at Astor Place I usually end up in one of the many Starbucks where I know I can get my coffee exactly as I like.

            Yes it is a big buisness but they are not Walmart. They treat there emplyees well and give a lot to good causes. And I wouldn't really say that small coffeehouses are being driven out. In fact, with a new Joe's (my favorite coffee), a new Gray Dog, and an exxprsso place on 9th, all recently opened or soon to be, I would say that Starbucks may have actually had something to do with the burgening coffee culture to New York.

            1. The Sheridan Square truck is better then Starbucks, but not really oustanding. It is good value and I get my coffee from the truck and then a choc croissant from Claude just a block away.