Best Coffeehouse - 2002
The name of this U. City coffeehouse is Yiddish for "crazy," and you'd be very, very meshuggah to miss its brewed-to-order joe. Patrick Liberto, who has owned the place for almost six years, offers his devotees a casual, humble room in the Delmar Loop. Students hang there, as do locals and area "journalists." Meshuggah's met with some stiff competition in the battle of the brews -- just around the corner are a Starbucks and a St. Louis Bread Company -- but has a staunchly loyal following of folks who know how they like their coffee and coffee grunts who can execute with precision. Meshuggah's coffee, roasted locally by Starr's, features espresso beans with a strong, hard flavor. The house coffee is served Americano style -- two shots of espresso mixed with steamed water -- and the result is stronger than drip coffee, thank heaven. Meshuggah serves no drip coffee at all, and the staff makes nothing until a customer orders it. Of course, a range of caffeine delivery systems is offered, and the staff will gladly make you a whole-milk double cap, extra shot, pulled with a teaspoon of unrefined sugar, as well as your basic double espresso or chai. Meshuggah's also preparing to expand its muffin- and bagel-heavy fare sometime this fall.