Espresso News from Phoenix

You'll see art like this at the SW Latte Art Competition - and maybe at 32 Shea. (photo by mortefort on Flickr)

My friend over at the Girl from Arizona blog likes things that are good in life: travel, craft beer and, now, espresso. She’s fairly new to fine espresso, and a recent post of hers shows that she’s already tapped into some cool coffee happenings in Phoenix. Boogie over to her blog to read about the SW Latte Art Competition and Coffee Week. (Holy cow, did I just mix my beer and espresso metaphors?)

But stay here for something else coffee-related: I’ve found a relatively new to me coffeehouse called 32 Shea. It’s in a free-standing building on the NW corner of 32nd Street and Shea Boulevard in Phoenix. So far, I’ve been there twice. And I’ll have a hard time passing it by whenever I’m in the neighborhood.

What’s so good about it? Feast on this:

  • Cappuccino. They serve it up at just the right temperature with a rich but compact layer of microfoam … aka a wet cap. That’s the way I like. No bitterness, just good steamed milk and espresso goodness. I still haven’t tried an americano yet, but that’s on my agenda.
  • It’s open late. Like 10 p.m. most nights, and midnight on weekends.
  • Craft brew! Local craft brew! There’s no room for taps, but 32 Shea has several fine local labels and a few regional offerings.
  • The OMG. This is a sandwich of the gods, I tell you: prosciutto, mascarpone and  fig spread. It’s spectacular, and I will need one on a fairly regular basis. It comes with potato chips, the only knock against it. I’d rather have some fruit or cottage cheese. I’ll eat potato chips if they’re in front of me, and therein lies the problem.

I haven’t tried dinner or dessert, but the lunch menu gives me confidence that both would be excellent. It’s also a very friendly place that’s good about remembering people. A nice personal touch. Drop in sometime … start with the cappuccino and an OMG.


5 thoughts on “Espresso News from Phoenix

  1. Nichole L. Reber

    Good post. Informative and mouth-watering. Reminds me of my second trip to Italy. Had been drinking Starbucks for a couple of years by then, but only mochachinos and other sacrileges. When a friend a I sat in an Illy cafe I was astonished at how good espresso was. When we then had Lavazza I ditched Starbucks in favor of heaven. To this day, even here in Lima, Peru, it’s more likely I’ll be at a cafe serving up these espressos than the dried prunes Starbucks calls coffee.
    On another note, I just subscribed to your blog. Hadn’t done that, though we’re BlogGlue partners. Your content is diverse and enjoyable, and we have a lot in common–except that I’m an urban wannabe-surfer girl and you’re a crazy passionate adventurist. Also, I saw 127 Hours the other day and thought of your blog.
    OK, off to publicize your post through Twitter.

  2. WanderingJustin

    Thanks for stopping by, Nichole. Combining architecture and travel … neat idea. Are you based in Peru? I thought I saw some mention of that in one of your posts.

    I can’t bring myself to watch 127 Hours. Hits too close to home.

  3. Girl From Arizona

    Thanks so much for the mention Justin! Next time I’m up north I’ll drop in to 32Shea. I’m noticing a trend of coffee shops with craft beers: Lux, and maybe Cartel by end of year. Maybe I’ll scoop you on a post while you’re in Asia 😉

  4. Labelle

    My decaf looks lame in comparison to that sweet cup of java beauty!

    127 hours made me want to barf. I couldn’t watch it either cuz it’s too close to home.

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