Gimme! Coffee, Roebling Street

The Gimme! Coffee logo, taken from the awning above the shop on Roebling Street in Brooklyn.I discovered Gimme! Coffee on my first Coffee Spot visit to New York in 2013, when I visited the Mott Street branch in Manhattan. However, it took me another three years before I explored Gimme! Coffee’s Brooklyn heritage, when I visited Roebling Street in Williamsburg. Ironically, this is the newest of three New York City branches, having only opened in 2011, while the first (and other) Brooklyn branch has been around since 2003, the company itself starting in upstate New York in 2000.

Roebling Street has a simple, rectangular layout, with the door at the right, the counter at the back and a smattering of tables in the space between the two. Resisting the urge to cram too much in, it’s a quiet, friendly spot with a sense of space. There’s also some outdoor seating on the (relatively) quiet street.

Gimme! Coffee roasts all its own beans with a house-blend (Leftist), single-origin guest (Colombian) and decaf (another single-origin Colombian) on espresso. These are joined by two more single-origins on bulk-brew and third as a pour-over using the Kalita Wave. There’s also a range of teas from Metolius in Oregon and a selection of cakes and pastries if you are hungry.

January 2020: Roebling Street has closed, although I don’t know when. Unfortunately, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the remaining two NYC locations (Mott Street and Lorimer Street) have also closed for good, leaving Gimme! Coffee with no NYC presence. It will be sadly missed, although it’s still going strong in its hometown of Ithaca in upstate New York.

July 2022: Gimme! Coffee is now a cooperative and still going strong in Ithaca.

You can read more of my thoughts after the gallery.

  • Gimme! Coffee on Roebling Street in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
  • There's plenty of seating on the broad pavement outside...
  • ... which includes these two benches in front of the window...
  • ... and these benches around a tree trunk, which reminded me of the Mott Street branch.
  • The A-board was pleased to announce a new pastry supplier (well, new back in February!).
  • The other side artistically displays the seasonal drink.
  • Lert's go in, shall we?
  • A panoramic view from just inside the door, which is on the right-hand side of the store.
  • The takeaway table (well, trolley) is immediately to the left under the window at the front.
  • This is one of two four-person tables against the left-hand wall...
  • ... while the counter is at the back, taking up almost the full width of the store.
  • There's a two-person table in the middle of the room and then these three chairs on the right.
  • There are display shelves above the chairs...
  • ... which include these postcards, each with a different brew method on the front...
  • ... and instructions on how to use it on the back. Very clever.
  • Obligatory light-fitting shot.
  • The walls were adorned with wildlife photographs while I was there...
  • ... while the window sill doubles as a bookshelf.
  • The well-appointed counter is at the back of the store...
  • ... with the menu on the wall to the right.
  • If you don't fancy coffee, there's a decent selection of tea, all the way from Oregon.
  • If you are hungry, there are cakes and pastries too.
  • The espresso machine is at the left-hand end of the counter...
  • ... with a blend in the main hopper and a single-origin as a guest.
  • Pour-over takes pride of place in the centre of the counter. Sadly I missed happy hour!
  • I tried this single-origin Colombian through the Kalita Wave filter.
  • My coffee, with a morning bun: at four o'clock in the afternoon!
  • I'll leave you with my coffee as it contemplates the counter.
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Gimme! Coffee is an interesting coffee shop/roaster chain, which started in Ithaca, in upstate New York, where it still has three branches (and a fourth in nearby Trumansburg). The coffee, I believe, is still roasted in upstate New York, but Gimme! Coffee also has three coffee shops in New York City, over 200 miles away.

The most recent of these, on Williamsburg’s Roebling Street, is set back a little, leaving a generous space in front of the store. This is occupied by a pair of two/three-person garden benches, one under the frosted-glass window and the other at right-angles to it on the left. Meanwhile, by the kerbside, there’s a box-seat around a tree, which is very reminiscent of Gimme! Coffee’s Mott Street branch, which is the only other one I’ve visited.

In comparison to Mott Street, Roebling Street is huge, but by any other standard, it’s still fairly small, with glass double-doors on the right giving entry to a simple interior. There are three connected chairs ahead of you against the right-hand wall, followed by a retail shelf. If you want to plug your laptop in, there’s plenty of power outlets here. The counter is at the back on the left, although it occupies about two-thirds of the width of the store, while the front of the store is actually a wall, with a multi-pained frosted-glass window at the top.

The area between the counter and window has the remaining seating, which amounts to a pair of four-person tables against the left-hand wall and a solitary two-person table in the middle of the floor. The resulting lack of clutter works well since it leaves a large space between the door and counter, so customers who are coming in and out for their takeaway coffee don’t disturb those at the tables. However, I suspect it could be a bit annoying for anyone in the three seats by the door, although these were most often used by people waiting for their coffee.

There’s a small corridor which leads past the counter on the right and gives access to the offices and a cupping room at the back, where public cuppings are held every Tuesday, between 2pm and 3pm. Of course, while it was a Tuesday, my timing was terrible as I arrived at four, which also meant I missed out on pour-over hour happy hour (3pm to 4 pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays!).

Despite this, I decided to try the Colombian single-origin on the Kalita Wave (this was the same bean that was on the guest espresso, but I’d arrived too late in the day to try it). My barista employed an almost continuous pour technique, topping up the filter every 10-20 seconds, which is not something I had seen before with the Kalita Wave. The resulting coffee was quite strong with plenty of body, although I was hoping for a little more subtly in the flavour. However, if you’d like something different, then don’t worry: the various single-origins on offer change every two/three days.

Since it was late afternoon, irony demanded that I pair my coffee with a morning bun. Made of a tightly-wound spiral of springy bread dough, it was surprisingly savoury, with a cheesy (in a good way) flavour and a very chewy (also in a good way) texture.

107 ROEBLING STREET • BROOKLYN • NY 11211 • USA +1 718-388-4595
Monday 07:00 – 18:00 Roaster Gimme! Coffee (espresso + filter)
Tuesday 07:00 – 18:00 Seating Tables, Tables (outside)
Wednesday 07:00 – 18:00 Food Cake
Thursday 07:00 – 18:00 Service Counter
Friday 07:00 – 18:00 Payment Cards + Cash
Saturday 07:30 – 19:00 Wifi Free (with code)
Sunday 07:30 – 19:00 Power Limited
Chain Regional Visits 9th February 2016

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4 thoughts on “Gimme! Coffee, Roebling Street

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