Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Morning Owl - Revisiting The Australian Flat White
Morning Owl Coffeehouse at 538 Rochester Street, just north of Carling is on my list of Best Espresso Coffee Shops In Ottawa. I was more of a regular here two or three years ago and then it fell off my flight path. A combination of where my travels would take me in a day and also a few inconsistencies with the drink.
This morning I popped in to get a refresher and see how things have transpired for this weekday-only (7am to 3 pm) shop. Busy as ever with a steady stream of customers. Clearly a loyal following of regulars, ordering without hesitation or a need to glance at the menu board.
I ordered my usual for the Owl - a small Australian flat white. $4 with tax.The baked goods tempted and I went for what I thought was the least 'sweet' - a beautiful, moist and fruity blueberry scone. $2.50 with tax. Their baker said she has been making the treats for The Morning Owl for two years now.
My barista, Tommy said he has been working there for 3 years. A really good sign. The Rancilio espresso machine, there since day one, was still humming along.
What is new as of two weeks ago - and this is pretty important - they now use a custom-blend from Equator Coffee Roasters up in Almonte, outside of Ottawa. Not a lot of coffee shops in Ottawa are serving up Equator beans (I know of Café Qui Pense on Main Street), so as a fan my interest was piqued.
They are also selling this custom-blend in the shop. Owner, Jordan O'Leary, sent me home with a few beans to try in my own Rancilio machine, Silvia.
How was that flat white? Faith restored.
It was the right combination of caramel-y, chocolate-y notes. Not acidic. Good depth in coffee strength. And not to be overlooked - the right temperature on the milk. Too many places overheat their milk.
In fact, I was left with a WOW feeling. The kind of wow that makes you want to bring your empty cup back and tell them yourself.
Morning Owl Coffeehouse
538 Rochester Street
Mon - Fri: 7 am to 3 pm