Whole experience (cafe + coffee): 33/40
Bean: Mecca Dark Horse
A wet Sunday morning finds Nerd 2 and I travelling back to my old hood in Enmore to grab a 11am brunch with some friends. Our destination was Shenkin Kitchen, the second such spin off from the Shenkin guys in Erskineville.
Readers of the blog may know I’ve reviewed Shenkin’s original café in Erko and the Espresso bar on King Street really well and, when offered a meal at the new Shekin Kitchen I jumped at the chance. Just encase you’re interested in its location it’s on Enmore road (just past the Theatre if heading away from the city).
Lets be honest, Newtown in the rain is never an optimal time to go looking for a table. Newtowners when it rains 1. Go into coffee shops. 2. Start to hibernate in those coffee shops for hours upon hours.
It was of no surprise when Nerd 2 and I asked for a table for 5 that the staff member had a look of panic spread across her face, gathered herself quickly and told us the wait would be about 15 mins. 40 mins later Nerd two and our three friends and I were heading in.
Shenkin staff managed our wait well, while we were out on the street, they gave us constant updates and apologies on the movement (or lack there of) from other customers, at about the 20 min mark they offered that we get takeaway coffees while we wait. We jumped at the chance.
The table ordered an array of food and drinks, I went the long black and chorizo shakshuka (I’ll just put up pictures instead of going into detail over what everyone ordered).
The long black (along with all the other drinks) arrived to the table in good time. The Mecca Dark Horse blend was great, the crema was full with a rich cream colour. The aroma quite fruity like a berry with a slight roasted sent.
The flavours were quite sweet (berry like) balanced against some strong floral acidity. The coffee worked wonderfully with the food that had similar strong acidic and sweet notes from the tomato of the shakshuka.
Letting it cool brought out the floral acidity of the flavours, but also added the a bit of a cocoa flavour to the mix. Well worth lingering over on a wet day.
Overall, our meal lasted far longer than it usually would have (with the rain still falling heavily) but was wonderful experience, very equal to their original. I’m a huge Shenkin fan, they do great stuff with the Mecca bean which only Mecca themselves can really match. If you are solely after the coffee I’d advise their espresso bar on King. However, if you’re after the full Shenkin deal, Erskineville or Enmore are very solid choices. My only advice would be that if faced by a queue at Shenkin – good things come to those who wait.
1. Coffee score
Style (look and feel): 8/10
Experience (taste and smell): 8/10
Coffee total: 16/20
2. Cafe score
Style (what’s it feel like):
Service: 9/10 (wonderfully friendly and attentive, in store and in-line)
Whole experience (coffee + cafe): 33/40