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goodbye rochester : leaf & bean

July 29, 2010

What’s this? One tiny store in the corner of Chili-Paul Plaza gets its own goodbye?

Oh, heck yes it does.

When I think about what I’m going to miss most about Rochester, Leaf & Bean is pretty near the top of the list (and you know there’s an actual list forthcoming…it’s inevitable).

This place is amazing. First things first, their coffee can’t be beat. I would rather have a cup of Leaf & Bean coffee – any flavor – than a cup from Starbucks. Higher praise cannot be found.

And the variety of flavors! Oh my land…where to begin. Let’s just say that standing in front of Leaf & Bean’s shelves of coffee and choosing a flavor for the week is my happy place. Since I’m such an obnoxious efficient decision maker there’s always a solid amount of QT spent there. And that’s fine by me.

Beyond brewing the best coffee ever to grace Western NY, they also make a mean latte, espresso, frappe, chai, and/or anything else you could ever possibly want. I was recently introduced to the evils of chocolate chai with a shot of espresso, which was as life-changing as a hot beverage can be. It will make you rue the day you ever ordered anything that was not a chocolate chai with a shot of espresso.

Also worthy of praise: the food. Usually coffee shop food is decent, but nothing to write home about. You write home about the latte but not the lunch. Not so with Leaf & Bean. You could write novels home about their menu. Their sandwiches are beyond amazing…and if I could talk myself out of ordering the Coldwater (mozzarella, red peppers, basil pesto on grilled panini bread) every time I go I would try something else and let you know how great that is too.

Even when I step away from the counters with my selected bag of coffee, caffeinated beverage, and panini in hand, there’s still a whole store left to love! Leaf & Bean rocks the ideal coffeehouse setting – soft lighting, comfy chairs, great music. Sitting in Leaf & Bean – reading, photo-editing, chatting with friends, drinking tureens of coffee, etc – is one of my favorite things to do in life.

If you live in Western NY, please frequent Leaf & Bean as frequently as possible…and then tell me all about it so I can live vicariously through you. If you don’t live in Western NY, please join me in visiting their website and wishing that computer screens functioned like closets in Narnia.

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