TODAY

Wednesday, October 1

Gapers Block
Search

Gapers Block on Facebook Gapers Block on Flickr Gapers Block on Twitter The Gapers Block Tumblr


Drive-Thru
« Friday Foodporn: Purple & White Onions Kids Halloween Party at Green City Market »

Business Sun Oct 18 2009

European Coffee and Pastries, Chicago-Style

Sometimes when one door closes, another one really does open.

I was still mourning the recent closure of Urban Café on Irving Park Road when the Julius Meinl Coffee Bar & Patisserie opened down the block (1416 W. Irving Park Road). I felt much like I did when I was about 10 and picked out a new hamster to replace our family's first hamster, which died after only a week: a little guilty and wistful, but, on the whole, selfishly happy to have a tiny, fuzzy poop-machine once again - or, in the case of Julius Meinl, an elegant neighborhood coffee-and-pastries stop.

Though the focus of Meinl's Irving Park outpost is take-out (the location houses their bakery, with a coffee shop added to the storefront), those familiar with the Julius Meinl at Addison and Southport will appreciate the bar seating in the window. If you're not in a hurry, you can enjoy a shot of espresso served in porcelain on a dainty silver tray accompanied by a glass of water. Those of us with less time to be genteel (read: 80, X80 and X9 bus riders headed for our daily Red Line commute) will appreciate the to-go coffee and tea options. My standard is the house coffee, though the Kir Royal tea is delicious and non-caffeinated, and a wonderful seasonal option is the pumpkin spice latte, made with real pureed pumpkin blended with steamed milk, espresso, and housemade spiced simple syrup. It's the best flavored latte I've ever had.

Now, I'm picky about pastries; if I'm going to eat several days' worth of saturated fat at one time, it better be well worth it. I've yet to try a Meinl pastry I regret. The croissants are like taking a miniature European vacation; the almond option is particularly luxurious. My husband tried their hearty egg-bacon-and-cheese croissant sandwich and loved it.

A final word: Every one of the baristas, including the manager, has been welcoming, pleasant, even downright cheerful, even on the greyest fall mornings. Clearly, this is a Chicago-style European coffee bar and bakery, the best of both worlds.

 

emily / November 19, 2009 11:39 PM

Two words that Julius Meinl should have listened to before they opened the Irving Park Circus... Asado Coffee!

Add a Comment




Please enter the letter c in the field below:



Live Comment Preview


Notes & Tags

Items marked with a * are required fields. Please respect each other. We reserve the right to delete any comments borne out of douchebaggery or that deal in asshattery.

Permitted tags and how to use them:

To link: <a href="http://blahblahblah.com">Link text</a>
To italicize: <em>Your text</em>
To bold: <strong>Your text</strong>

Event Mon Jul 21 2014

A Garden Party at Rick Bayless' House

By Judy Wu

I was using Rick Bayless' restroom, I mused, staring up at the ceiling window that was projecting a heavenly beacon of light upon my less-than-angelic duties. I could barely distinguish Rick's faint murmurs through the orange walls, something about how...
Read this feature »

 

Events

Thu Oct 2 2014
Tapped Out Wine Dinner @ Troquet River North

Fri Oct 3 2014
Friends of the Craft @ St. Matthias

Fri Oct 3 2014
Taste Talks Kicks Off in Chicago

Sun Oct 5 2014
Friends of the Grape @ St. Matthias


Drive-Thru on Flickr

Join the Drive-Thru Flickr Pool.


About Drive-Thru

Drive-Thru is the food and drink section of Gapers Block, covering the city's vibrant dining, drinking and cooking scene. More...
Please see our submission guidelines.

Editor: Robyn Nisi, rn@gapersblock.com
Drive-Thru staff inbox: drivethru@gapersblock.com

Archives

 

 Subscribe in a reader.

GB Store

GB Buttons $1.50

GB T-Shirt $12

I ✶ Chi T-Shirts $15