Anthracite Coffee is a corner stone of the Itaewon coffee scene so it was time for a visit – despite the gnarly weather.
Naver maps link: Anthracite Coffee
This place fits right into the basic Seoul requirement of providing a lot of space: 3 floors in very simple industrial design that are great for hanging out (presumably for days at a time?). They roast their own beans and during my visit (mid November 2016) they had quite a few options for pour-over coffee:
Kalita Waves are the weapon of choice here. All was nicely pre heated as it should be, but then things got a bit more “intuitive”. I had ordered Kochere from Ethiopia – same as somebody else. Hence they made 2 cups with one brew.
In itself totally possible, but it requires even more attention to brewing time, water ratios and weights, and then it can be totally OK. But here: No timers, no scale, just intuition (I observed the same procedure for other single cup servings prepared later).
I don’t know if it was the lack of infusion, the wintery mood or just me, but the result was not outstanding. A good coffee, but nothing to rave about. I had asked which of the Ethiopians was flowery and this was supposed to be it – Maybe due to wintery air I couldn’t taste much of it.
Anthracite is a good spot with a solid reputation and the space is outstanding, but the pour-over coffee could be even better, with a little more attention to process and details – just a thought.