Bedford Hill Coffee Shop: NYC: Brooklyn: Bed Stuy

July 2011 Update:

Apparently they have an espresso aioli now.  Man, I really have to make the rounds in Bed Stuy again.

March 2011 Update:

I made it back to Bedford Hill to try one of their pastry-stuffs and in order to see how their Americano compares to the epiphany-inducing one I had at Little Skips the other day.  They had a number of baked goods that tempted me, but one was the clearly irresistible option.  They have created a Bed Stuy Nutella conversation with their Hot Nutella Tart as a retort to Dough's Nutella-filled donut.

Hot Nutella Torte
Now, historically I haven't really cared much for tarts, and maybe it's just the Nutella, but I must say I don't think it is.  I actually really enjoyed a flaky pastry for once!

Inside BH's Hot Nutella Tart

Inside Dough's Nutella-filled Donut
My enjoyment this time may have been a direct result of pairing it with an Americano.  I'm generally pretty cynical about food and beverage pairings somehow elevating each other so that the gestalt is something more than the sum of the component parts, though I've had a few occasions where I found it to be a very real thing. This was one of those times, as I felt that the roasted flavors of the coffee really complemented the slightly burntness of the tart and vice versa.

That being said, the Americano was a bit of a disappointment after the revelatory one I had at Little Skips the other day.  I'd give this one a 7/10.  After a few sips I went ahead and added some simple syrup and soy milk.
Original Review on 2.32.2011:

I had Tuesday off of work and planned to start the day with breakfast and coffee at the relatively new (another late 2010 west Bed Stuy opener) Bedford Hill Coffee Shop.  Walking in was a little awkward as the two doors sort of open into each other in a funny way, made more awkward because I was wearing my backpack.  So I was already feeling dorky and a bit extra self-conscious as I walked in and up to the counter, where I was greeted immediately by the cashier, "What can I get for you?"

Lying in bed last night, I reflected that the socially reasonable thing to do would be to say, "Well, this is my first time here," etc. from there, chatting maybe about what they have, what's good, and such like for a minute.  Because I'm a socially unreasonable person with a love for menus though, I just said, "Ummm..."  and frantically tried to take in all the information the various menus and display cases had to offer.  Because I hadn't had anything to eat yet and always wake up starving, I craved food food and so wanted something more food-ish than a pastry.  It seems that their non-pastry food options are few (pretty much just a bagel and this or that type situation), so I went with the most appetizing thing: an everything bagel with the works: smoked salmon, cream cheese, tomatoes, red onions and capers.

The Works on an Everything

Realizing I'd have to come back again when in the zone for pastries (and maybe just to hang out and do some writing on my laptop), I also decided to just get the food to go and make coffee at home that day.

While waiting for my bagel, I had time to take stock of the place.  The pastries actually look pretty swell, and I'm excited to try them.  Actually, they have some smaller-than-the-standard-NY-size-though-normal-by-any-reasonable-standard cupcakes that look really good too, so I'll be prepared next time.  Also, Rilo Kiley started playing on their station or playlist, so I like the place more by virtue of that.

I just always feel like I don't fit in everywhere I go, that I don't understand social norms, that people are judging me..  But maybe it's all just my social awkwardness and mostly just in my head, projections of my awkwardness onto others.

I really shouldn't have eaten that whole thing in one sitting.  In fact, I wrote that on my "Things I've Learned" list:

1. Never eat a NY bagel sandwich of any kind in one sitting.

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