Crafted by Te Aro
Crafted By Te Aro is the latest addition to ever growing Lower Ossington. An outpost, if you will, of the popular original Leslieville location, Crafted brings westward a fancy "cold drip coffee" that takes 6 hours to filter through a mad scientist looking contraption.
No doubt in my mind, the people behind Te Aro's two locations are coffee lovers. Aficionados. Crazy, mad scientists of coffee. And they're totally into experimenting with all the different ways to get coffee from the bean into my cup.
I am amazed at all the different ways you can get a cup of coffee here. Methods vary from the simplest drip coffee, which is easy enough, to a custom ground French Press ($3.15, 2 cups). If that's not good enough, there's a "Pour Over" ($3.15), or if you're really in the mood for something experimental, "siphoned" coffee complete with science class style Bunsen burner - which I'm told is still a bit of an experiment for the staff but entertaining nonetheless to watch.
The most impressive of Te Aro's experiments has to be the cold drip coffee. Fashioned with glass tubes and a plexiglass stand - this coffee takes 6 hours, dripped from distilled water ice cubes through winding glass tubes, into a carafe which is then kept in the fridge to give it even more flavour. This is limited availability coffee, obviously due to the lengthy process. In Brooklyn, where this method is becoming wildly popular, people call ahead to reserve their morning cup. I can see why. The flavour is outstandingly smooth and way less acidic than anything I've ever had before. ($4, 4oz)
Aside from the methodology, Crafted by Te Aro roasts their own selection of Direct Trade beans, and they like to change it up seasonally. Of course, there's also your standard cafe fare, espresso ($2.10) etc. Look for something interesting called "Flat White", which is an extra long shot of espresso with latte style foam. Teas are available from Tealish.
The atmosphere is pretty casual with a bare wood bar, industrial chic tables and chairs, and a rolling garage door style front window. They've really done a great job at transforming the space that was last home to the dearly departed Get Real Cafe. Mason jar lights, funky cafe-themed art and good tunes make this a relaxed place to hang out. At midday the place had a steady stream of customers. There's also the familiar patio out the back that offers a bit of quiet from the busy interior.
Treats from Circles and Squares like scones and brownies are available for $2.50, and in the near future there will be sandwiches and vegan cupcakes added to the menu.
Crafted by Te Aro is open Monday-Wednesday 7:30am-6pm, Thursday to Sunday 7:30am-8pm.