I was finally, finally able to make my way into the city again to check out another D.C. coffee shop. I have a list going in my journal now—maybe a little nerdy or OCD but I don’t care. Today I decided to check out Filter Coffeehouse, just off Dupont Circle. Seating is limited in this tiny little baby coffee shop, but I luckily caught someone right when he was packing up his things, and who was also seemingly irritated by my simple question—“Are you leaving?” Hey, for all I know, he could have been packing up his stuff for a quick getaway later but, either way, I secured a table.
The coffee shop is cute and the latte and granola biscotti I ordered were delicious. I like when you’re able to tell that the espresso in your drink is fresh, fresh, fresh and actually tastes good. I worked at a coffee shop for a year-ish in undergrad, and learned all the lessons on espresso and its magic capabilities. Did you know that right after you make a shot of espresso, you can actually see the three “levels” (or what ever the appropriate term is) and if you do let it sit there for too long, it can actually go bad? Make sure you’re getting your espresso fresh when you order coffee. It makes a big difference.
On the same note, I’ve never seen so many coffee shops that offer pour-overs in my life. But this is what I’ve been
ordering recently, so I went back to another classic, the latte. I didn’t get a warm and fuzzy impression about the coffee shop at first—it seems to be a place very much frequented by regulars of which I am definitely not—but for the basic things I needed from it (good coffee and time to get work done), I was satisfied.
On the subject of Dupont Circle, I was reminded of Connaught Place in Delhi when walking around the circle and up 20thStreeth to the coffee shop. Connaught Place is one of the largest business centers in Delhi, but I came to know if for the shopping it provided. We visisted Connaught Place several times while in Delhi, one time for ice cream, another to purchase
a hard drive, another time for lunch, and many other reasons. Connaught Place was not far from our guest house (or at least it didn’t feel like it when in an auto) and one of it’s most noticeable aspects is the Inner, Middle, and Outer Circle, each featuring its own array of shops and restaurants. If you asked me today to go back and find the Middle Circle, I wouldn’t be able to tell you without Rahul’s help which one this was, but that’s part of what I loved about Connaught Circle. It was busy and hectic and was literally stacked and packed with businesses. Dupont Circle is a mini version of this, not as confusing, but with plenty of shops and restaurants to keep residents and tourists occupied.
While on Connaught Circle, one other major thing I remember about is the underground shops, which provided
an interesting experience. We moved fast through them, but that didn’t stop shop owners from almost tracking us down to shop at their store. I didn’t mind this so much, really—like I was telling Rahul recently, one of my favorite parts about India was the busyness and hectic-ness and in your face-ness.