Joe Van Gogh
1104B Broad Street
Watts Hospital-Hillandale District, Durham
8 oz.Coffee: $1.39
8 oz. Cappuccino $2.55
A coffee shop that takes the time to turn an ungainly cord into a piece of art is a coffee shop that speaks my name.
Joe Van Gogh roasts their organic coffee in Hillsborough. They receive it directly from the growers overseas. Their website profiles some of their source farms, in case you are interested in learning more about the process and the people who bring you Joe Van Gogh coffee.
As for the coffee shop itself, I enjoyed the atmosphere. Bulk beans line the entry way. Lime green walls, a steel-encased counter, red glittery chairs and bar stools, and a bi-level seating set-up make for a fun appeal.
The menu sports your standard coffee and espresso choices with decent prices. Free wireless is available. They also offer a few international drink styles I had not heard of before, including a Japanese Iced Coffee (a cold press method), and the Australian Latte, which involves pouring milk and espresso into the cup at the same time. Regular old coffee is available in three methods: already-brewed drip, fresh drip, and french press.
My double cappuccino with skim milk displayed the coffee and foam heart that signifies a good barista, but the drink was too milky for me.
This might have been because the espresso was very smooth, a strange complaint, I know. I prefer mine with a bite.
I also had a Mighty Tea Jasmine Leaf iced tea, which was good and strong. I ended up buying a pound of their holiday roast coffee for home, a medium roast with a bit of chocolate. They also had pastries from Guglhupf and bagels from Bagels on the Hill.
The best part about Joe Van Gogh was definitely the staff. They were quick to offer unasked-for coffee samples and even insisted I sniff the tea before they brewed it. I will be back for the atmosphere, the service, and to try one of those international drinks.