It’s beginning: that bitter season where every moment outside is just a temporary purgatory on the way to being indoors and warm once again. The best place for respite is most likely your own home, preferably in front of a fire with a hot beverage in hand; but there are places that can be just as comforting at frigid times like these. Menagerie Coffee is such a place. The moment you walk into the bright airy space, you instantly exhale. The white walls and wood floors evoke a feeling of tranquility and ease.
Located in Philadelphia’s Old City neighborhood, Menagerie has only been open for a little over two months, but it has the feel of a business that is settled and confident in its identity. What Menagerie does is coffee, and they do it well.
A well-curated collection of delectable beans are waiting to be selected and for your preferred method of brewing to be chosen. On behalf of coffee snobs everywhere I say to go with the pour over, a method highly revered by purists for the clear unadulterated flavor you can extract from the bean.
The food menu may be small, but the pastries and sandwiches available do not disappoint. Their breakfast sandwich was everything that I wanted it to be: a perfect storm of spicy, salty, and sweet. Thinly sliced ham and smoky pepper jack cheese are glazed with maple syrup and layered between a crisp English muffin to create bite after perfectly balanced bite.
If you’re in Philadelphia and in need of a space as warm as the beverages that they artfully serve, come inside Menagerie Coffee, sit down, and relax.