I wasn’t a coffee drinker until last Tuesday when I got a preview of The Queens Kickshaw. A mixture of hot chocolate mix x2 in coffee has allowed me to tiptoe the line before, but now my hymen’s broke and I’m a full-on caffeinated giggalo. That damn fresh-ground, pour-over. They also have this machine, it’s the latest, greatest darling of brew obsessives, the La Marzocco Strada. Apart from being a spaceship, it gives them the temperature and pressure controls needed to respect blended and single-origin espressos, staying true to the discerning brewer’s movement, The Third Wave.
————————–They open this Sunday, the 27th——————–
The owners, Ben Sandler and Jennifer Lim, walk about 10 minutes from their home to the shop. They’ve been doing it for the last year, ever since they took away modern era flooring and unearthed the original planks from the turn of the 19th century. That wood was only the beginning, as Kickshaw’s builders, EcoSystems, and Build It Green provided much of the other repurposed and reclaimed materials that make up the C-bean haven. Rusted coils hold the lights and a carpenter’s level from the Greatest Generation acts as the counter’s edge. In the back room is a 16-foot long, mismatched wood table which is the encouraged communal for sipping, chatting and bringing supplies from the Broadway public library across the street. Around the bathroom door are frames that came salvaged from a neglected 10-foot ladder and inside, for those who can’t hold it, is some mind creeping, MC Escher-like tile work created by Mr. Sandler himself. Look down and it’s a wonder if the speckled flooring means it’s finished or TBA. In completion, Kickshaw looks like the dream pub created by a desperate, ingenious painter.
Their grilled cheese sandwiches will consume many megawatts of tumblr, flickr, twitter, Facebook and every other electric social eating experience in the next year. They’re inspired by and sourced from their Greek, Italian and other neighbors – but more to the matter, how do you call Manchego & Ricotta, Minted Eggplant, Capers on Multigrain a grilled cheese? There’s nothing 5th grade about that. And why did I never think of putting egg and cheese inside pandebono before they did??
It will be a while before the outside become proper Kickshaw, but they do have a gold leafed sign in front. It’s such a relief from graphics of every other storefront lately. Isn’t it interesting how we are calling skilled workers artists now? That’s an improvement in branding for them, hopefully not a relief from necessity.
The Queens Kickshaw
See their menu at Grubstreet