It's a natural for "the city that never sleeps": Java has become so much a part of New York City's lifestyle that the city has coffee lovers' tours. Although no New York City tourism company has yet to offer a professional coffee tour, several enthusiasts have created their own walking tours. Some coffee shops and organizations host coffee sampling nights, too.
The do-it-yourself coffee lover's tour created by Every Trail covers 16.2 miles, and includes points of interest in both Manhattan and Brooklyn. The site recommends breaking the tour up into several days. The tour includes seven coffee shops, such as Stumptown Coffee Roasters (stumptowncoffee.com), which has locations in both Manhattan and Brooklyn, and is known for its espresso and cold-brew coffees. Gimme! Coffee (gimmecoffee.com) is another stop on the tour, and serves espressos and lattes in a laid-back, casual atmosphere.
On the Road to Epiphany has created a 10-stop "do-it-yourself guided tour map" for coffee enthusiasts in Manhattan. The stops include Kaffe 1668 (kaffe1668.com), a two-floor coffee shop that serves what it calls "intelligentsia coffee." Another stop is La Colombe Cafe (lacolombe.com), an Italian-style espresso bar with limited seating. La Colombe Cafe caters to regulars: It doesn't display a menu, so customers have to know exactly what they want at the counter.
Sometimes you don't need to visit multiple coffee shops to taste different coffees. For example, RBC NYC (rbcnyc.com) is a specialty coffee shop that hosts "manual brew-downs," coffee competitions in which brewers are invited to manually craft a type of coffee by whichever brewing method they choose. Guests and judges are invited to taste test each beverage and have a chance to win prizes.
New York City plays host to a Coffee & Tea Festival, a two-day event every winter or spring. The 2012 event will mark the seventh annual event. It includes an annual barista challenge and taste testing areas, features dozens of exhibitors and offers instruction on how to incorporate your favorite coffees into recipes. Tea etiquette and how to make tea cocktails are also covered in the event.
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