We took a few weeks off from blogging to recharge and catch up on some outstanding projects that we've been meaning to do. Oh, you know... spring cleaning, home improvement stuff, and more importantly, eating at awesome places and creating recipes which would end up as content for our blog. Would it be considered a break then?
Anyhoo, we're back!
Thanks for sticking around.
You like us! You really like us!
We're kicking things off with a neighborhood Madison, WI gem that immediately became our favorite coffee bar.
5th Element Coffee is a concept pour-over coffee bar that serves Fair-Trade coffee, grown and harvested through an environmentally sound process, direct from coffee farmers in El Salvador. You can find them bookended by Oliver's Public House and Lombardino's on University Avenue, so they're in good company. Click here for their actual location.
The folks at 5th Element Coffee LIVE AND BREATH coffee.
We thought we knew a lot about coffee before attending their grand opening, and we quickly found out, that they had a lot to teach us, and were even happier to do so.
The folks at 5th Element are some of the most down-to-earth, easy-going people you'll ever meet, and they're just like every other Madison, WI resident.
They love the Badgers.
They have pride in their community.
... they share the same Mid-Western values that we West-Coasters have grown to love and emulate.
Did I also mention that they LOVE coffee?
So much in fact that 5th Element Coffee is the 'baby' of 2011 World Barista Champion Alejandro Mendez and co-owner and fellow coffee-lover Todd Allbaugh.
Here are the MUST-HAVE beverages when you stop in at our favorite coffee bar:
1. The Cold Brew
The Cold Brew here is LEGIT! It is arguably the most popular beverage on their menu, and deservingly so. It's the smoothest cold brew we've ever had. If you're an iced coffee drinker, you'll love this! Not into coffee but love iced tea? Try their cold brew as an alternative. We drink it as is, but you can sweeten it up with some raw sugar, sweetener, or honey to give it that tea-like feel. You'd have to hurry if you want to try this. It's usually sold out by mid-day, especially during the warmer months.
2. The Flat White
For those of you who aren't familiar, the Flat White is a beverage prepared by pouring milk that has been steamed until it reaches a velvety consistency called microfoam, over a single (or double) ristretto shot of espresso. This gives it a super creamy finish without compromising the flavor of the coffee. If you like lattes, try this as an alternative. It may become your fav!
They prepare the best Flat White in town...
...and we were lucky enough to have ours prepared by the World Barista Champion himself!
Check him out in action!
3. The Cold Hot Chocolate
Yup, you read that right. The COLD Hot Chocolate. This started out as a special request, and quickly became our kiddo's signature drink. This is off-the-menu, but the folks at 5th Element are happy to oblige. We've tried it, and we have to say, that this drink is super tasty, and definitely chocolatey. Oh yes, and Cold. If you have kiddos, they'll LOVE this! If you're a kid at heart (like we are), then you'll love this too!
They also have fresh pastries daily from Batch Bakehouse, a locally owned and operated establishment in Madison, WI.
On the weekends, they serve 'made-to-order' raspberry or banana waffles!
Not too heavy, and not too light. They're juuuuust right!
The highlights on these? The butter they serve with it. OMG... delish!
You can enjoy your coffee beverage of choice, your pastry or waffle of choice all while listening to Bob Marley or Adele on vinyl.
That's the vibe you'll get here.
Oh, and yes, they have in-house Wi-Fi for their customers, and seating and tables of course. Check them out. They're made with salvaged bowling alley lanes. They're mad cool!
We do hope that you stop in for a cup, and say hello to the friendly staff.
They are fantastic people, and they are more than happy to engage in conversation.
They are really that nice and welcoming.
Ask them about the coffee.
Watch them prepare your beverage.
It's truly amazing to see how much love and passion goes into every cup.
We won't be surprised if you call 5th Element your favorite coffee bar in Madison, WI.
Tell them Epicurean Chronicles sent you!