A review of Satan’s Coffee Corner in Barcelona, Spain. Notes are by an amateur coffee enthusiast and digital nomad looking for a good espresso pull and remote work places.
I was at a loss to think up words to describe this place, so I procrastinated. I am still at a loss, so I am tempted to just let the photos speak for themselves. Be warned there may be rambling raves.
So Barcelona has a handful of independent coffee shops and roasters that are recognised on the international stage. One of them is N0mad Coffee, which was closed on the long weekend I was in town. The next in line on this global coffee grapevine is Satan’s Coffee Corner.
By the time we (I brought a group) arrived, there was already waiting group that filled the entrance. Though there were fewer than 10 people waiting, when factoring in European paces it’s about the equivalent of 50 by my East Asian standards.
We almost left purely for starvation reasons, but we persevered in the end when we told the baristas we didn’t mind sitting separately. The staff speak excellent English at this cafe and as shown above, the menu is well translated. They serve snacks, breakfast, and lunch items that are more globally inspired than Catalonian, so probably a good choice for someone homesick for San Fran or NYC.
Before continuing with the food, the remote work brief: the place has no Wi-Fi, and I don’t think any plugs either. The long tables that run along the two walls of windows are quite shallow, so laptop work will probably happen after eating. The entire place nudges you to slow down with the relaxed pace of serving and equally relaxed local patrons whose laughter and chatter float up to the high ceiling.
Their beans come from the local roaster Ride Side Coffee and I think they may also have some rotating coffees that are sourced from direct trade roasters. For my group, we tried the Spanish signature cortado, flat white, Kalita brew, and aueropress. My cortado was delicious, with beans that that somehow seemed milkey, then chocolatey, with a mildly acidic end note. It’s not the North American espresso smokey. In fact, it seemed to have a hint of the sea — a mirage of salt and the best part was the milk wasn’t overly sweet. The flat white also had a good milk to foam ratio and temperature — weak for me, but good for those who like it. The 15g for the Aeropress we all agreed was a bit too weak, even by Japanese light standards, which didn’t compliment the nutty profile. I would suggest getting a 30g or aeropress extraction instead. The Kalita brew worked out much better, with a black that had sweet, smooth, floral, tea-like notes.
Their Story / What I like About Them:
So why I like them…the photos say it all because the flavours live up to their vibrant colours. Of the cereals, my favourite was hands down the almond milk chia pudding perfect orchestration of cool liquid against warm almonds, moist liquids with hearty crunches and delightful pomegranate bursts.
The porridge is not be underestimated. It was the perfect thickness for me, (watch it’s hot), with toppings nutty and sweet toppings that add perfect hearty texture and complexity, cut through with the tangy dried raspberry powder.
I get the impression people have strong opinions about omelettes. I am not one of them, so I mostly judge the egg first and if the toppings were what I like, it’ll be good enough. This simple breakfast is wholesome with tasty eggs (to me moist, buttery, and eggy) and great, smokey ham / European bacon. The sourdough bread was the real highlight despite the strong flavours from the other ingredients.
The sandwich was probably the biggest mystery, but also the best surprise. The special accents came in the ingredients not mentioned on the menu — the pomegranate seeds, fresh cilantro, softened yam / sweet potato, and special mayo mix that came with the juicy and tender pork. This “sandwich” is actually a Vietnamese Bahn Mi that has meandered its way through China (pork skin) down through Iran and Turkey (pomegranate), wandered through Africa (sweet potato), then sailed into the port of Barcelona (cheese and mayo, which originated from Spain). This culinary nomadic result works damn well.
Those are the simple tools — look at the single hotplate — where everything is made. I’m a bit mind boggled. The place has a bunch of masons jars with homemade sauces and jams.
I don’t even need to dive into the coffee or the proprietor’s philosophy. Hipster with a sense of humour and a handful of friendly hospitality sums it up.
Just drop by, if nothing else, just to watch the slant of light that graces that beautiful Slayer Espresso machine when there’s a lull.
- Coffee: Espresso, aeropress, cold brew, half-half warm cold (handover personally for me was so-s0)
- Food: Baked goods, breakfast, lunch, andwiches
- Cafe Space: Approx 25 people with an outside bench too
- Friends: Hangouts, meal
- Workspace: Individual benches along the windows, 2-person tables that can be paired
- Remote Work: No Wi-Fi and don’t think there are plugs
|Address:||Carrer de l’Arc de Sant Ramon del Call, 11
|Website:||Website / Facebook|
If you liked this post, check out my London coffee walk.