Barlove: Kaffemik

As per their website Kaffemik is a Greenlandic word (obviously), which stands for a traditional open house get together, where coffee is served. Presumably plenty of it, since staying awake through the eternal darkness of Greenlandic winters is probably not for the faint hearted.  My first association though was with the Romanian word mic, spelled differently but pronounced the same, and meaning small. It’s also very fitting, because Kaffemik is indeed very small, a bar with a coffee machine, four miniature tables with chairs and an area by the wall where you can stand in the comforting company of your espresso.

This sounds a bit like describing the home of some minimalist forest elves, but Kaffemik is actually located only a stone’s throw away from bustling Mariahilferstraße- needless to say we approached it from the other end of Zollergasse, but pottering around aimlessly in Schottenfeld and Neubau never hurt anyone, especially not me, since this is one of my favourite areas in Vienna.

It was also very worth it, because Kaffemik is a life saver on afternoons when you’ve walked quite a lot and perhaps at one point indulged in a rather intense Viennese lunch, which might just induce a slight to devastating sleepiness. It also looks like it could be a life saver on early mornings when life needs a nudge to get started or on evenings when you really need an extra cup to make it through the night unscathed.

This paean is of course inspired by the coffee, which is wonderful- it doesn’t take a scientist to find good coffee in Vienna I hear you say, and that’s true, but Kaffemik is of course what would be known as a third wave coffee bar catering to a crowd with tastes slightly different from the classical ones- Viennese roast hovers somewhere between medium to dark, whereas most third wave coffees veer towards lighter, fruitier roasts.

In a further fortuitous development, their coffee on the day was Central American and we happily sipped it among a small group of locals engrossed in their reading material- which reminded me of a beautiful thought I’d just see in a book about Viennese coffee houses. Everyone has the fundamental right to at least three coffee shops: one where you can be seen, one where you can go unnoticed and one you never step your foot into. Kaffemik most decidedly does not qualify for the last and besides the coffee it also provided us with the opportunity to sample some Austrian craft beers, from the Bierol brand and we can warmly recommend their Mountain Pale Ale. And when there’s good coffee and good beer all else will go just swimmingly.

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