Sausalito Espresso

Overall Rating: 5.750

Address: 50 Beale St.
Cross Street(s): Mission St.
City, State ZIP: San Francisco, CA 94105
Neighborhood: SOMA
Phone: 415.222.9922
Hours: M-F 6am-4pm
Type of Establishment: Espresso Bar (Chain)
Cafe Rating: 4.80
Barista: 7
Savvy: 6
Ambiance: 4
Presentation: 2
Consistency: N/A
Espresso Machine: La Spaziale
Coffee Rating: 6.70
Aroma: 6
Body: 6
Brightness: 7
Crema: 8
Flavor: 7
Taster's Correction: -0.5
Size: XL
Primary Taste: Smoky
Coffee Beans: America's Best Coffee
Cup Manufacturer: Paper
Price: $1.25
Last Update: 11/08/2006
First Reviewed: 11/08/2006
Notes: Outdoor Seating

In a former Starbucks at the SE corner of the Blue Shield of California (formerly Bechtel) Building, this café has several outdoor sidewalk tables and tight quarters inside with only window counter seating. They're popular for their gyros and even falafel (despite Cafe Algiers around the corner). Using a puny, two-group La Spaziale, I was impressed with what they got out of their generally inferior materials (ABC beans?!). The pour is extra-large and in a paper cup, but the baristas take the necessary time to brew it properly. As a result, it has a darker brown mottled crema of a decent consistency. It's brewed more as a double, so it's not watery at all. In fact, it has a high serving temperature, which enhances the burnt edge to its flavor - which is otherwise made up of smoky tobacco. And while the cup has no sweetness, it carries a surprising boldness that works despite everything running against it.