I was tired of the bland-coffee-plus-lots-of-sweetened-condensed-milk I’d had in Asia so far, so I looked up a more interesting cafe when in Hong Kong. Via a google search to this coffeegeek.com thread, I heard about Rabbithole Coffee & Roasters… and what a successful morning that was.
It’s part coffee equipment showroom, part roastery, part place to drink a coffee (with just a few seats along a shared table and a few more on a back patio).
They had a few kinds of coffee beans and a few roasts of each, available as coffee made with any of their machines (as an espresso, filter drip, press coffee, syphon, cold/ice drip, or so on). I thought I’d just look around and have an espresso, but I ended up chatting with the friendly owner and he insisted I try the same beans made into coffee four different ways, on the house (thanks!), to compare– and they were quite different. Stimulating science!
I’m no coffee expert (and don’t care if I’m using the ‘wrong’ flavor adjectives), but here’s what I thought:
Their Yirgacheffe (full roast), as espresso, a bit sides-of-the-tongue tart and lemony (but not otherwise fruity, and still a bold toasty flavor).
Syphon while I watched (fainter lemon, stronger roasted and nutty flavor):
Cloth drip (not as strongly toasted, still lemony, and a taste that reminded me a bit more of wood and stayed in my mouth for a while):
Funnel / paper drip (somewhat similar to the previous drip, but still different– lighter, it’s just the lemon that stayed with me after sipping):
I also had a cold drip coffee, the “Ethiopian Operation Red Cherry”, it was strong, dark, intensely like cocoa (but not chocolate) and, indeed, cherries. One of the most memorable coffees I’ve ever had!
I found Rabbithole a bit difficult to find from the address, and had almost given up, but am glad I didn’t. It’s on an upper floor of a building in a dense area, hard to see from street level and no obvious external sign I noticed, but the stairs were marked:
There was also a good and cheap Macau-style noodle shop catercorner from it.