Deli &

Overall Rating: 4.650

Address: 124 Montgomery St.
Cross Street(s): Btwn Sutter & Bush Sts.
City, State ZIP: San Francisco, CA 94104
Neighborhood: Financial District
Phone: 415.781.2727
Hours: M-F 5am-3:30pm
Type of Establishment: Deli
Cafe Rating: 4.50
Barista: 7
Savvy: 7
Ambiance: 2
Presentation: 2
Consistency: Inconsistent
Espresso Machine: Laurentis
Coffee Rating: 4.80
Aroma: 3
Body: 5
Brightness: 7
Crema: 4
Flavor: 5
Taster's Correction: 0.0
Size: L
Primary Taste: Malt-like
Coffee Beans: Prebica
Cup Manufacturer: Styrofoam
Price: $0.95
Last Update: 04/26/2006
First Reviewed: 06/05/2003
Notes: None

Unassuming deli/bakery with no seating. Outside, under a wooden construction corridor that?s been there for years, the signs and awnings say Deli & Espresso. One of the cheapest espresso shots you can buy in the city (it?s still under $1), the owner here once held decent espresso standards. He was often self-critical of his own pulled shots, and he was something of a perfectionist when it came to his espresso machine servicemen. But the quality here has tapered off a lot in recent years. The owner still gets their beans from Superior, insisting on Prebica - which Superior prefers not to distribute in the Bay Area. He?s pretty knowledgeable about quality factors (the choice of only paper cups aside), and their baristas have had training. Despite the beans, machine, and cups, they managed to pull decent shots for a time. But things have noticeably slid downhill. They once created a very rich, thick crema on a full-bodied cup, but over time the crema has grown pale and the body has thinned out. It?s as if the owner stopped following his own advice. There?s something of a malt-like flavor in the cup with a steady aftertaste that lingers. Served as almost a doppio. This was once one of the better espresso values in the city, still at 95�, but it?s clear it?s getting you a lot less with time. This is midlife crisis espresso that has let itself go for too long - perhaps frustrated with all the attention given to the younger competition in the neighborhood.