THE GRIND 6/6: Three Seat Coffee & Barber
Written By Emma Holter
One of the first things that co-editor Ashley and I bonded over when we first met was our shared love of coffee. We were both studying abroad in London at the time, and quickly set out on finding the best independent coffee places in our immediate neighborhood (preferably with strong espresso and a comfy couch!). In the same way that you can find a Starbucks on every other block in Manhattan, Pret A Manger and Cafe Nero are ubiquitous on the streets of London--which can get pretty boring pretty quickly. I wanted to find cafes that were independent, locally run, and unique to their neighborhood. Over the course of that semester, finding a new coffeeshop to study in helped me get out of my usual routine (class, library, museum, home, repeat!) and grow to know a new part of the city.
THE GRIND is a series of blog posts that will spotlight independent coffee shops in New York City that we love, and encourage you to check them out for yourself! I am hoping this series will bring structure to my morning, while simultaneously satisfying my caffeine addiction.
Three Seat Coffee & Barber
137 Avenue A (between St Marks & East 9th Street, just across the street from Tompkins Square Park), Manhattan, New York
Though it only opened in November 2016, Three Seat Espresso fits right in with the other independent, family-run businesses that have been in the East Village/Alphabet City for decades.
The space is bisected by a mullioned window that divides the coffee shop in the front half of the storefront from the fully-functioning barber shop in the back half. The café is full of sunlight, with giant picture windows that look out onto Tompkins Square Park. The whole coffee shop is accented by buttercup yellow--it's the color of the coffee cups, cutlery, and the flowers blooming from the succulents that sit on the marble counter bar.
The staff is very chatty and friendly--and they happened to be Australian when I stopped in the other day! They have many yummy pastries and lunch dishes on their menu (including a giant plate of avocado toast). For those of you that are gluten free or vegan there are also plenty of things on the menu for your dietary restrictions. The first thing I’m getting on my next visit is the matcha banana bread, which sounded delicious.
This was the first coffee place I’ve been to in New York that is card only, and for a girl who gets rid of all her change for her coffee order, I was a little surprised. The barista on-duty declared that Three Seat “is the way of the future.” This place had very strong, fresh espresso, which on a Monday morning was all I could have asked for.
Stay tuned for more recommendations to come!