There are several local coffee roasters in town. Handlebar is the most recent to join the scene and have become a top pick for locally roasted and lovingly prepared artisan coffee. You know, the new age of cafes with hyper-perfected beverages and latte art.
The roaster and cafe also has a serious cycling vibe. With the name like Handlebar, would you expect anything else? Moustaches, perhaps? There can be both.
I love that the spot shares an outdoor seating area with the sandwich deli next door. Once you start looking, you will see a boundary between the two shops defined by the different tables and chairs, but nobody has ever given me fuss for sitting on the deli side with a cappuccino, or sitting on the cafe side with a sandwich. And what a cappuccino it is!
Is this not a beautiful beverage, worthy of some adoring gazes and happy sighs before sprinkling on a little sugar? My confession is that it’s a decaf cappuccino and the folks at Handlebar didn’t even laugh at me or refuse service because of my request. Yes, I KNOW decaf gets some unapproving looks at many cafes. But whatevs, I’m sensitive to caffeine. My point is that they make beautiful drinks. I was here with some good food friends, we sat outside for an after-lunch coffee, had a proper catch-up, and made plans for the next adventure.
For spending nearly four years at Kew, I rarely ate at the Orangery, not with the student wages.
Coming back for a holiday is different, because now I’m a tourist. We met up with some old friends who’re still working at the Gardens and Greg treated us to coffees. I got a cappuccino.
Somewhere along the line the interior of the Orangey got an Ikea makeover, but in the process the espresso drinks got a lot prettier. Tasted fine as well, which is the main thing.
Fortified with caffeine and a catch-up with friends, we spent the rest of the day wandering the Gardens.
Ah, Powell’s. At least four hours were spent here on our first full day in Portland. I stocked up on more Oishinbo books.
In the cafe, a cappuccino revitalized me in time for a round of drinks and snacks for happy hour down the street.