Coffee-lover rlh bemoans a serious gap in the Boston coffee scene: The best local roaster, generally agreed to be Barismo, doesn’t really run a coffee shop where one can relax and enjoy a cup. And the places where you can relax serve a second-best cup. “What are your coffee destination favorites where you can get a great fresh cup, relax and enjoy it, AND then buy a wide range of freshly-roasted beans (Central American, African, AND South Pacific as well as thoughtful blends) to take home?” asks rlh.

And the hounds answered! Their picks:

• Cafe Fixe in Brookline: “probably the closest to the trendy new ultra-refined coffee bar type thing that i’ve found in boston,” says autopi.

• Simon’s, “a relaxing place to have a fresh cup that also stocks a good range of Barismo beans,” says greenzebra.

• Bloc 11, which dazzled rlh on the first hound-recommended visit: “I tried Bloc 11 today—a single brewed cup from the Chemex with Burundi beans—amazing cup of coffee—so much so that I got back in line and bought some of those beans to bring home.”

Cafe Fixe [South Shore]
1642 Beacon Street, Brookline
617-879-2500

Simon’s Coffee House [Cambridge]
1736 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge
617-497-7766

Bloc 11 Cafe [North of Boston]
11 Bow Street, Somerville
617-623-0000

Discuss: Artisanal Coffee in Boston

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