115A South Duke Street
Respite opened about six months ago around the corner from Brightleaf Square. It relies on a simple white and sky-blue color scheme and is full of light from its wall of window.
In addition to the large, open main room with couches, tables, and bar tables, there is one little nook of a room in the back. The coffee options looked pretty good and are growing, and I regretted not trying the pour-over iced coffee instead of a regular one.
Which isn’t to say that the coffee was bad—I just love to try methods that I haven’t before. It’s that curse I have of trying new things, which if you like this blog, probably isn’t a curse at all. But back to the coffee. Its flavor was toasty and full with a little bit of cinnamon—I’m not a coffee cupper, so I don’t have a built up vocabulary for describing it.
The café was about a third full on a weekday afternoon, and most of the patrons were relaxed and chatting, making me one of the sole laptop workers. I rather liked that. Another draw of this location is all the local goods they offer for sale. In addition to a selection of baked goods, there were Kelly G’s cupcakes, Kismet large crackers, Sallie’s Greatest Jams, Crooked Condiments, and some sort of well-loved mustard whose name I missed.
Ultimately, I’d say Respite is a great option for a coffee shop. Was there anything striking about it? Not really, but it was welcoming, and I’m definitely keeping it in mind when I need to work downtown again.