East Nashville’s food scene is exploding right now, so it only makes sense to find specialty coffee making strides as well. But Barista Parlor isn’t just making strides, it’s taken the scene into hyperspace.
Located in a remodeled garage, Barista Parlor is a pub-style shop with an excessive array of coffee options from 6 different roasters (Stumptown, Intelligentsia, Counter Culture, Coava, Sightglass, Mapcap). They offer 6 different coffees on brew bar (which alternate everyday) and 3 different espresso options ( 1 blend, 2 single origins). The equipment is a gearhead’s dream: 3 group head Slayer, 3 Mazzer Royals, Yama cold brew drippers, Marco Ecoboiler, Hario v60 and Nel drippers, and a designated grinder for each coffee. The only syrups available are vanilla and mocha, which are made from scratch on the premises.
I started things off with a shot of Coava’s Kilenso, Sidama. It’s a natural process that wasn’t roasted for espresso, but Slayer’s unique brew methodology allows for a incredible amount of control and the shot tasted great: bunches of berries and dark chocolate. Julie’s cappuccino tasted like blueberries and cream. I also had a shot of Sightglass’s signature Owl’s Howl espresso blend. It’s the first time I’ve had Sightglass since visiting their roastery in March, and I think that Barista Parlor is pulling shots of Owl’s Howl just as well as they do.
Next we moved on to filter with a pour over of the Santa Sofia, El Salvador, also roasted by Coava. It was a very sweet, delicate coffee. I found their brew method for the V60 to have a really light mouthfeel, which was enjoyable but harder for me to pick up on more subtle characteristics. Andy brought out samples of a Stumptown microlot and 2 iced pour overs, but unfortunately I forgot which ones. All of them were great though and I was impressed by BP’s consistency.
For chocolate lovers they have an assortment of bars from legendary Brooklyn chocolatier Mast Brothers as well as up and coming local chocolate maker Olive and Sinclair. The atmosphere is beyond hip and don’t be surprised if you see one of your favorite musicians stop by for a coffee. Word has it the Black Keys are already regulars.