Intelligentsia High Line Hotel
I had been highly anticipating the opening of the High Line Hotel not for their location or whatever else they have to offer, but solely for the Intelligentsia Coffee bar, the first in this big city. I've had Intelligentsia Coffee many times in their three different locations in Los Angeles, with hit or miss results, as well as a location in Chicago, and at various cafes around the US that use their beans. Like the other bigger specialty coffee names around the US, i.e. Stumptown, Four Barrel, Blue Bottle, I am frequently annoyed at the excessive branding that their shops are drowning in. I'll save that rant for another time though. The Intelligentsia at the High Line Hotel is very impressive looking. I finally visited on a nice, crisp day in October and got to sit outside with the coffee truck but ordered espresso from the bar inside. The coffee truck, although stationary, is impressive and a fully refurbished 1963 Citroen truck. Inside is a La Marzocco machine, pastry selection and everything your heart could desire. In the lobby of the hotel is relatively small bar with a La Marzocco and pour-over bar. Unfortunately the stress level behind the bar (or something) made for extremely rude service--and I'm not even one of those Yelp complainers! Either the bad vibes or a poor job on a high-tech machine resulted in some funky, sour espresso. Alas, Intelligentsia! Perhaps next time I should just brave the line for the truck for some friendlier service and better coffee.
Recommend: Try the espresso from the Coffee Truck and on a lovely day sit outside! Nearby is Chelsea Market and TONS of great Chelsea galleries! I'm partial to Gagosian Gallery on W 21st and W 24th Streets between 10 and 11th Avenues.
Note: Beware of brutal baristas inside the hotel. However, there's some pretty rare Single Origins that pop up around here, for something along the lines of 8 dollars a cup--possibly worth it if done right.
Espresso Rating: 6/10
Overall Rating: 6/10-- Props to the awesome coffee truck
Location: 180 10th Ave at 20th St, New York, New York 10011