Peet's Coffee & Tea

Overall Rating: 6.550

Address: 595 Mission St.
Cross Street(s): 2nd St
City, State ZIP: San Francisco, CA 94105
Neighborhood: SOMA
Phone: 415.495.4323
Hours: M-F 5:30am-6pm
Type of Establishment: Espresso Bar (Chain)
Cafe Rating: 6.50
Barista: 7
Savvy: 7
Ambiance: 6
Presentation: 6
Consistency: Inconsistent
Espresso Machine: Faema
Coffee Rating: 6.60
Aroma: 7
Body: 7
Brightness: 7
Crema: 6
Flavor: 7
Taster's Correction: -1.0
Size: M
Primary Taste: Pungent
Coffee Beans: Peet's Coffee & Tea
Cup Manufacturer: Japan Ceramic
Price: $1.55
Last Update: 10/28/2008
First Reviewed: 05/14/2003
Notes: Coffee Sales; Coffee Accessory Sales

Expansive Peet's outlet with plenty of window counter seating. When the espresso was good here, it was sweet, rich, and with a dark brown crema of moderate depth. It had excellent balance, body, and flavor depth, and they showed they knew when their equipment is "out of tune". But by 2006, high barista turnover really hurt their standards. Shots are often served extra-large, watered-down, with a thin crema (often with "hot spots"), and with nothing to distinguish it from an average SF espresso. This sub-standard Peet's quality was previously exhibited in their milk frothing/drinks (for which they use a dedicated Astra frother), but the quality drop has since spread to their espresso. The baristas here since 2006 have been markedly weaker, with a few exceptions, and this is reflected in reduced scores across the board and in the taster's correction. We used to take the extra effort to avoid this Peet's for other, less frustrating ones nearby, but a couple of the baristas here have shown some promise. The shots typcially come with a mottled dark brown crema of modest thickness with twin, pale tan heat spots. It has a modest body, isn't burnt, but lacks potency. A flavor of cloves and some tobacco - slightly watery. Another irritation: occasionally the counter staff won't get your "for here" request right, even if you tell them twice. (Worse yet are green baristas who, when you point out this error, will merely pour your espresso from a paper cup into a ceramic one when lines are busy. Hint: make sure the cashier hits the "FOR HERE" button on the register. It should display just above the register's total facing you.) Otherwise, served in a Peet's logo cup - apologetically at times (which is often) without a saucer. Tip: to avoid spotty milk frothing, order a caf´┐Ż macchiato (they skim off the best for it). And don't order the drip coffee.