We were out and about in the Castro yesterday, came across a great men’s store and found one of the knitting stores I’d seen online – a bit overwhelming on my first visit trying to figure out which was baby 4ply and which was double knitting but definitely somewhere I can find my way back to when I’ve run out of my current bag of wool. We were going to stop for coffee in the Castro, found one place online we wanted to try but when we walked into the narrow store with glass cabinets of coffee beans and a Pete’s/Starbucks smell and a tiny Cimbali machine in the corner we decided to give it a miss. Also, no food. We’d also seen someone in the men’s store with a Blue Bottle cup and after an unsuccessful attempt by me to chase him down we asked one of the guys working in the store if there was a Blue Bottle near by – apparently yes! A cart near the BART station we’d arrived into an hour earlier. It was gone by the time we got back there.
So we rode the tram back down Market to do a couple of things in town and while en route I remembered a cafe Ma’velous that we’d trammed passed a couple of times – it’s on a part of Market that you don’t really walk to and in a reasonably unsavory part of town, above 7th Street. However, it had been on my very very first coffee list when we came to visit San Francisco early last year before moving here so decided it was finally time to stop. When we got out we realized we were standing in front of the huge building that Twitter and Yammer are moving into – it’s apparently going to be part of town that explodes as the next San Francisco tech scene.
And Ma’velous was right across the street. Inside, odd narrow small place that you can tell is a bar by night. Actually from the outside it looks a bit like a bar or even anonymous in the less that lovely street.
Sometimes these kinds of places make crap coffee, but given that there was nothing but a bar, a back shelf of beautiful wine bottles and a gleaming glass-enclosed coffee machine taking center stage gave us hope! The machine is a La Marzocco, but it has glass casing – fascinating! There were only about 5 people in the cafe.
No cookies, so we just got 2 cappuccinos. The guy was meticulous making them and they were so velvety and smooth. The flavor was strong and almost recognizably Stumptown but with a definite cinnamon flavor.
We sat down the back on some old green colored retro chairs with ashtrays in the arm rests next to some odd lampshades. The place is going to be overrun when Twitter and Yammer move into the neighborhood.
Ma’velous, 1408 Market Street, San Francisco