La Boulange

Overall Rating: 6.950

Address: 543 Columbus Ave.
Cross Street(s): Btwn Union & Green Sts.
City, State ZIP: San Francisco, CA 94133
Neighborhood: North Beach
Phone: 415.399.0714
Hours: M-Su 7am-7pm
Type of Establishment: Bakery (Chain)
Cafe Rating: 7.20
Barista: 7
Savvy: 7
Ambiance: 7
Presentation: 8
Consistency: N/A
Espresso Machine: Brasilia
Coffee Rating: 6.70
Aroma: 6
Body: 7
Brightness: 7
Crema: 7
Flavor: 7
Taster's Correction: -0.5
Size: M
Primary Taste: Pungent
Coffee Beans: Equator Estate Coffees
Cup Manufacturer: Comptoir de Famille
Price: $1.50
Last Update: 06/04/2008
First Reviewed: 06/04/2008
Notes: Coffee Sales; Outdoor Seating

Yet another replicant in the Bay Bread group's vast restaurant and café/bakery chain. This one opened in the old Ben & Jerry's/Sophie's Crepes space in the summer of 2006. It has some wooden benches and limited shop window counter seating, but the main attraction is the sidewalk, café table seating along Columbus St. Using a two-group Brasilia semi-automatic machine supplied by Rosito Bisani (it looks like a 205 DEL-2), the barista will redo shots that aren't up to standard - a great sign. The resulting shot is properly short with a medium brown, patterend crema. It is generally a decent quality shot, even if nothing jumps out at you in its aroma or flavor (a consistent characteristic of Equator Estate Coffees). It tastes of a mostly pungent flavor with mild herbs and a not necessarily unpleasant metallic aftertaste. Some limited latte art on milk-based drinks.