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Cafe Grumpy

I'm meeting a friend from Seattle just to catch up and am looking for a quiet coffee place that will meet a Seattleites coffee standards and I've heard good things about Cafe Grumpy in Chelsea? Has anyone been? Any other suggesitons in the area would be great.


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  1. The coffee is phenomenal, definitely one of my top pics in the hood! Another idea is the Prudence Cafe - I have only had their espresso (great though) but it is super quiet and comfortable (couches, big comfy chairs).

    2 Replies
    1. re: Snaps

      Jack's Sitr Brew Cafe on Front in the Southstreet Seaport is a mecca for coffee afficionados - you might want to check it out.

      1. re: bronwen

        Southstreet Seaport is a little too far, but I will definitely keep that in mind for another day. I have heard about it and have been meaning to give it a try.

    2. I really like the space and vibe at Grounded on Jane between W. 4th and Greenwich Ave. I can't vouch for the regular coffee, but the chider (chai tea & cider) is very good. Grounded strikes me as the type of place that takes its coffee seriously, so I'd give it a try. I'd be curious to hear reviews on the caliber of Grounded's coffee from other 'hounds.

      1. Grumpy has excellent coffee. Not the coziest place for hanging out though.

        Although the Jacks at the Seaport that another poster mentioned is a bit far away for you, Jacks original shop in the West Village is outstanding - excellent fair trade coffee, and a rustic, dare I say hippie-ish vibe. It's quite small though, but then again Grumpy doesn' t have a ton of seating either. It's on West 10th St between Greenwich Ave & Waverly Place.

        Another option could be to go to the Chelsea Market & go to 9th St Espresso. Kick ass espresso drinks. I don't think they have seating of their own but there are many other places to sit in the very funky and cool Chelsea Market.

        2 Replies
        1. re: billyeats

          I always forget about Chelsea Market (even though I love the place so much). I am looking for a cozier place though, maybe I'll check out the Jacks in the WV.


          1. re: offthebeatenpath1

            Everyman on 13th st. between 3rd and 4th. Used to be a 9th street espresso. Good place to sit after going to the Farmer's Market on Saturday morning. Easily the best coffee place in town if you like espresso. Grumpy is good, but pricey.

        2. The Jack's in the West Village was great. Joe's is also right there but Jack's seems a little less clustered. Cafe Grumpy's has good coffee and the staff is nice but I sometimes have major guilt pains when I plunk down $7.00 for a cup of coffee. I don't care if it is a clover machine....

          1. I don't think you can beat Grumpy for pure coffee quality. Both the espresso and regular coffees are out of this world (and coffee is not $7 a cup; more like $2-4). The problem with the place is it gets very crowded, and the temperature rises to uncomfortable levels. I buy a bag of beans there every week or so, but I've stopped drinking coffee there because it's like sitting in a sauna, even when it's empty. You might want to try what used to be called Ninth Street Espresso. It's got a different name now, but it's still makes a killer espresso, and it's a very low-key place. It's at 13th St. between 3rd and 4th avenues.

            1. I have still to write up my report from our recent trip...but we had been looking forward to trying out Cafe Grumpy, especially as it was just along from our digs at Chelsea Lodge. I'm sad to have to report that it was the biggest foodie disappointment of our trip! Both espressos we had from there were swill: sour and overextracted...and the cap we ordered to go was just a waste of some nice ethically farmed milk.

              I have to confess to being a bit of a coffee geek, but honestly I have had a lot better from a lot less esteemed establishments. I really thought I was in for something special....so a bit of a let down there.

              On the upside, my wife and I both really liked the cafe setup. Oh and their name and branding are great! :)

              I would have liked to have gone back to try them out at another time, but we really didn't get a chance. Maybe on the strength of the rec's below I'll give them a second chance next trip.

              2 Replies
              1. re: ooglewoogle

                Huh, I've been there probably four dozen times and never gotten a bum pull. In fact if anything they're usually the tiniest bit underextracted. You should definitely give it another try. Number one espresso in the city, I'd say. Gentle roasts from amazing crops, expert extraction and unfussy presentation; excellent milk. (See also Ninth, Joe, Gimme! and, distantly, Everyman.)

                For the record I find Jack's and Grounded both pretty inadequate, but only on the basis of two cups each.

                1. re: zbs

                  Ok, well I'll defo. give them another bash later on in the year when I return. To be fair, having read about their ethos, I should really have had a blether to the barista and expressed my misgivings there and then...I'm sure they would have tried to sort me out. Just that we were kind of in a rush.

                  Thanks for the other tips. Look forward to giving them a whirl.