I am a little bit of a coffee shop whore. I absolutely love discovering new ones, especially the small-business-owned/one-location-only kind. As a writer, I can spend hours researching and typing away until day turns to night. I think of coffee shops as these little houses filled with cozy drinks, gourmet treats and patrons hard at work. With these high standards in mind, here’s what I thought of Dollop…
Dollop Coffee is in Streeterville.
Which pretty much guarantees it’s going to be a perfectly manicured establishment. I spent hours deciding on the menu (as usual), saddled up to the high benches with my half-caff whole milk steamer, and gazed outside the windows to watch the residents of the luxurious “The Streeter” apartment complex stroll in and out of their home in the middle of the day. Long story short, I would go back there in a heartbeat. But in case you want it, here’s the long story…
Decor: Modern, clean, light wood tables, light installation for sign, high ceilings. Reminds me of a place I would find in LA.
Environment: Ideal for working. Tons of table space and outlets. Most people were there to work, not to talk. There was high benches all around the perimeters of the shop and plenty of short and tall tables in the middle to seat bigger groups. For those of you who like to get cozy, there were four cushiony chairs near the window. And for those of you who, like me, hate the AC and like to be outside as much as possible, there were six tables outside on their patio.
Internet: Works great inside. But as soon as you go outside to the patio, you’re SOL.
Music: 90’s music: Seal, All 4 One, Offspring, Mariah Carey. LOVED every minute of it.
Coffee: I had a whole milk latte (ever since I realized that fat is good, I am experiencing a whole new world with creamy, rich, whole milk). It had the iconic latte flower design drizzled on the top and a strong taste. For the intense coffee connoisseurs (I’m talking to you Christie Russert), they feature four different types of ways you would want it prepared (drip vs. pore over vs. etc.). When the coffee is so good that it can speak for itself (no sugar, syrup or caramel necessary), then I know I have found a winner.
Baristas: Hipster, but not in that rude-I’m-better-than-you way. Willing to help and be patient while you stand staring at the menu with mouth agape taking 18 minutes to decide on your drink.
Snacks: Gluten Free Bars (big fan of the minimally-processed, real-food ingredient GFB Brand), gourmet nuts from a brand in Boston (with flavors like hazelnut coconut and cinnamon almonds), pastries from a local Lincoln Park Bakery.
Food: Sandwiches, Bagel Sandwiches, Pies made in-house. There was not a lot in the realm of Gluten-free/Paleo diet so I have little to say about the food. Overall, I never expect too much from a coffee shop for food because I’d much rather them concentrate on good coffee and healthy snacks.