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Friday, June 1, 2012

Food Friday: Barista Parlor

I always get excited when great things happen in my neighborhood. New businesses are a sign that our neighborhood is growing and improving.  When I heard that the Barista Parlor was going to be opening up in an old car garage on Gallatin Road (right next to my old Hula Hoop studio) I was very excited. The best part was the team at Barista Parlor kept their audience up to date with shop renovations and coffee tastings via Facebook and Instagram. By the time they finally opened their doors a few weeks ago I already felt attached to the place.

First off, the space is cool. Can't think of a better description.  Everything is open, with the large garage doors still letting in tons of light.  Long wood communal tables provide seating space and the ability to get to know your neighbors. Most of the art, including the large print on the back wall, was done by East Nashville local Bryce McCloud of the Isle of Printing. (I've been itching to get my hands on some of his work). The bathroom is the nicest public bathroom on the East Side. Clean, and full of antiques and art.  Just like walking into your grandma's potty. All the coffee making equipment is located in the center of the space, and you can watch your Baristas work their magic.

Isle of Printing's huge letterpress peice

View from the back wall

But don't let the cool decor detract from the true star: the coffee. Their coffee menu is extensive and the offer a few select brews per day.  I didn't know for sure what the specialty coffee tasted like, so I just ordered my go to latte. AH HA! But they have a latte upgrade- Bourbon barrel aged vanilla. I must say that with out a doubt this is the best coffee I have had since living in Nashville. It was just the perfect amount of sweet. No need for me to add any additional sugar, which I'm very surprised about knowing my sweet tooth.
Bubon Barrel Aged Vanilla Latte

While at the counter, we had an impulse purchase.  A cardamon fig cake from local bakery Foxy Baking Co. The cake had a denseness to it, making it fairly dry.  But that's what happens when you put in such a strong spice.  The layer of figs in the center offset the cake's stiffness and left me wanting more.  Once again, another thing I wish I didn't split.

Cardamon Fig Cake

The only bummer that we noticed was the lack of outlets.  When I go to coffee shops I tend to read or do work and I almost always bring my laptop.  Because of the big open layout, there are very few open plugs. And even fewer of those plugs are near any table. If they sunk in a few power outlets in the long table this place would be freelancer heaven. And a big thanks to the random strangers who kindly offered to move their seats so we could charge the laptop!

Familiar sight: Steve editing photos

This will be a destination coffee shop for sure. And aren't I the lucky girl that has it in her backyard!

Super cool motorcycle with side car siting in the parking lot

Barista's outside wall being painted on Record Store Day 2012
Barista Parlor on Urbanspoon

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