East Village Coffee Shops: The Mercury Dime

The Mercury Dime

The Mercury Dime

Many hours are spent by the East Village Podcasts editorial “team” in local coffee shops.

For me, the coffee shop is a refuge from being cooped up in the “cozy” East Village apartment office. I can potentially order a cuppa and a bagel or something-or-other, not spend wads of cash and let someone else do the dishes. Once in a while, I’ll even have a chat with a local, East Village neighbor or visitor, too.

But, for the E.V. neophyte, where are the hot spots of java? Without further ado, the first of a multi-shop series on East Village coffee destinations.

What’s your favorite coffee shop? Tell us in the comments.

The Mercury Dime

For the coffee connoiseur, The Mercury Dime offers “passion for the grounds.”

Located on Fifth Street between Second and Third Avenues, this used to be East Village restaurant titans Jack and Grace Lamb’s Jack’s Luxury Oyster Bar (which is apparently on the way out).

Now, Milk and Honey‘s owner, Sasha Petraske, has taken over and produced a winner along with his partner, TJ, who took EVP‘s order.

The first thing that struck me was that TJ asked, “Do you like coffee?” as I ordered.

No one has ever asked me that question at a coffee shop. “Must be something going on here,” I thought.

There was and is something going on. TJ and Sasha’s coffee is a cut-above. It includes careful preparation of each cafe customer’s order and all of this in a cozy, carriage house location on East 5th Street.

The Mercury Dime Cuppa

The Mercury Dime Cuppa

Today, I ordered a sweetened “Caffe Espresso” for $2 to which TJ added a light, sugary cookie. Not the normal grande-sized, American cup of coffee, this espresso cup may not appeal to everyone in the neighborhood – good. This place isn’t huge. And, I really like it there – everyone stay away from my favorite, new (only open 2 months) great, little East Village coffee shop.

This is the only two-level coffee shop I know of in the nabe. Each room is small and I can imagine that as The Mercury Dime gets popular, it could get loud considering the proximity of the tables and walls.

Free Wi-Fi?

Yes. There’s free Wi-Fi at The Mercury Dime. But when I tried to use it today, the access point worked, yet the Internet was apparently not connected to it. Hate that. No other access points in nearby buildings were left unprotected by passwords. For shame. Brothers and sisters of the East Village, share thy Wi-Fi.

In spite of the Wi-Fi issue, The Mercury Dime remains a winner. I wanted to stay longer but the next coffee shop “called” to me.

View from the 2nd Floor

View from the 2nd Floor

Tomorrow: The Bean



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June 1st, 2008

Entry Filed under: East Village, New York City



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