Asado Coffee Roasters

Overall Rating: 7.850

Address: 22 E Jackson Blvd.
Cross Street(s): Btwn State St. & Wabash Ave.
City, State ZIP: Chicago, IL 60604
Neighborhood: Loop
Phone: +1.773.703.3658
Hours: M-Th 6:30am-6:30pm; F 6:30am-5pm; Sa 9am-3pm
Type of Establishment: Espresso Bar (Chain)
Cafe Rating: 7.50
Barista: 8
Savvy: 7
Ambiance: 7
Presentation: 8
Consistency: N/A
Espresso Machine: Espressonistic Works B.V.
Coffee Rating: 8.20
Aroma: 8
Body: 8
Brightness: 8
Crema: 8
Flavor: 8
Taster's Correction: 1.0
Size: L
Primary Taste: Pungent
Coffee Beans: Asado Coffee Roasters
Cup Manufacturer: Vertex
Price: $2.50
Last Update: 12/28/2015
First Reviewed: 12/28/2015
Notes: Coffee Sales; Coffee Accessory Sales; Outdoor Seating

Asado Coffee Company started in 2009 with Kevin Ashtari?s personal roasts at their Lakeview shop. In 2010, the Asado name gained recognition from Chicago Magazine as the best cup of coffee and the Chicago Reader as the best roaster. They've since expanded to two more locations, including this historic Loop building - called the Pickwick Stable. Located in a tight, private alley once called Pickwick Place, it was built just after the 1871 Great Fire and remains one of downtown Chicago's oldest and smallest buildings (19 ft x 19 ft). The long passageway leads up to rather large sign exclaiming "COFFEE". There is outdoor seating among metal tables and chairs in the alleyway with typically a single seat inside the tiny service space. This place is tiny. Their chalkboard menu displays their offerings of drip, pour-over (no batch-brewed), coldbrew, and espresso drinks - plus scones, alfajores, and other pastries. They also offer some of their retail roasts for sale. Using a three-group spring-lever driven Mirage Idrocompresso (their standard), they pull shots of Especiales with a lightly speckled medium brown crema with lighter thickness but decent density. It's a long cup but isn't runny. The Especiales is a mix of their two Mt. Meru Tanzania coffees (one a peaberry), roasted medium and an cliché-busting dark levels. The result creates a body-forward, almost Brazil-like taste which I yet find original and of great quality. The milk-frothing here is velvety, but excessive: the cappuccino is a head-sized massive cat bowl suggestive of 1980s wannabe French cafés, and the resulting coffee flavor is washed out in a sea of milk as a result. Stick with the non-milk-based drinks.