Cafe Venue

Overall Rating: 5.300

Address: 218 Montgomery St.
Cross Street(s): Bush St.
City, State ZIP: San Francisco, CA 94104
Neighborhood: Financial District
Phone: 415.989.1144
Hours: M-F 5:30am-3:30pm
Type of Establishment: Cafe (Chain)
Cafe Rating: 5.80
Barista: 6
Savvy: 6
Ambiance: 5
Presentation: 6
Consistency: Inconsistent
Espresso Machine: Promac
Coffee Rating: 4.80
Aroma: 3
Body: 5
Brightness: 7
Crema: 4
Flavor: 6
Taster's Correction: -1.0
Size: M
Primary Taste: Smoky
Coffee Beans: Panache
Cup Manufacturer: Delco
Price: $1.30
Last Update: 01/10/2007
First Reviewed: 06/18/2003
Notes: None

More of a downtown lunch spot, with several indoor cafe tables and cafeteria trays. Back in 2003, they used to have thorough baristas here who performed deliberate tamping and timed shots to exactly 22 seconds of pour. Today they are much more automated for handling the crush of demand, and it shows in the quality. Using a two-group Promac (replacing their old La San Marco), they serve espresso with a thin, lighter brown crema. It always had a tobaccoy flavor with a bold brightness in the cup, but the aroma and taste has unfortunately shifted more to the ashy side.