Kaffeekommune

An espresso in a classic, thick-walled white cup, made with the lightly-roasted, naturally-processed Ethiopia Bombe G1.On my way back from Berlin in May, I broke my journey in Köln, from where I took a day trip by train along the Rhine to Mainz. The main reason for going was to enjoy the views along the Rhine, but while I was in Mainz, it seemed only fair that I try the local coffee scene. Sadly, due to delays and cancellations, I only had time for one stop, choosing Kaffeekommune as my destination (with thanks to European Coffee Trip for the heads-up).

Kaffeekommune is Mainz’s original speciality coffee shop, going strong since 2014 and, for the last two years, roasting its own coffee too (in an old car repair shop). There’s a wide range of coffee available (while I was there, six single-origins, a decaf and two blends), all of which are omni-roasts (roasted for both espresso and filter). Kaffeekommune has a concise espresso-based menu, offering single or double shots, with the choice of bean changing weekly, while you can have any of the coffees via the AeroPress. Meanwhile, if you’re in a hurry, there’s batch brew filter, with Kaffeekommune using a different coffee for each batch! If you’re hungry, there’s also a small selection of cakes.

You can read more of my thoughts after the gallery.

  • At the eastern end of Breidenbacherstraße, half way up the hill behind the centre of...
  • ... Mainz stands this rather lovely little coffee shop with outdoor seating on the quiet street.
  • This is the view approaching along Breidenbacherstraße (rather than coming up the hill).
  • Tram! The lines run up Gaustraße and you can see how steep it is.
  • Neat sign ('Best Coffee in Town'). In case you hadn't guessed, this is Kaffeekommune.
  • The outdoor seating was very popular, so hard to photograph without catching people.
  • If you do sit outside, please take the time to admire the building opposite.
  • You should also check out Kaffeekommune's cargo bike.
  • There's a neat window to the right of the door, with a stone arch above it.
  • The menu is to the right, while the choice of coffee beans...
  • ... is to the left. There were nine options, six single-origins, a decaf and two blends.
  • The window itself.
  • You order coffee to go from here, plus you use the window if sitting outside.
  • The day's selection of cakes are displayed in the glass case on the table.
  • Alternatively, you can use to the door on the left to go inside.
  • The counter is straight ahead, with retail to the left (kit) and right (beans).
  • The racks of beans neatly screen off the service area behind the window.
  • The counter is on the left, with the seating to the right and at the back of the shop.
  • There's a row of three two-person tables along a bench against the right-hand wall...
  • ... while beyond them is more seating, with a small raised area right at the back.
  • Tucked in to the right of the steps at the back is a four-person table...
  • ... while above that is a three-person table on the raised area.
  • Another view of the seating down the right-hand side...
  • ... while here's a view from the back showing the tall, brick-vaulted ceiling.
  • Check out the bicycle on the wall.
  • Obligatory (weird) lighting shot.
  • There's a set of narrow shelves to the left of the door with coffee-making kit for sale...
  • ... while there's more on these shelves high up on the wall.
  • To the right of the door, more racks of shelves hold retail bags of coffee, as do the...
  • ...  the shelving racks behind the window, separating the serving area from the seating.
  • The shelving rack with its bags of retail coffee to the right of the door in more detail.
  • Each shelf holds a different single-origin or blend.
  • The very shiny La Marzocco KB90 faces you as you come in...
  • ... while filter coffee, in the shape of the AeroPress and batch brew, is at the back.
  • Grinders, meanwhile, are against the left-hand wall.
  • From the back of the counter, you get a good view of the business end of the KB90.
  • Like many coffee shops in Germany, Kaffeekommune uses the Recup resusable cup scheme.
  • I decided to have an espresso, served in a classic white cup with a glass of water.
  • Kaffeekommune has a different espresso each week. This was the Ethiopia Bombe G1...
  • ... a light-roast, naturally-processed coffee.
  • After a quick tour, I was on my way, heading down Gaustraße to explore Mainz.
  • However, I didn't leave empty handed. I had the batch brew filter (the Las Cascadas)...
  • ... taking it away in my Frank Green ceramic to enjoy on the train (plus some shortbread).
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Kaffeekommune is on Breidenbacherstraße, a 15-minute walk from Mainz Hauptbahnhof, and half way up the steep hill that rises to the west behind the medieval centre of Mainz. At the eastern end of the street, near its junction with Gaustraße, you can also get there on the No. 11 tram. Kaffeekommune is quite small, occupying a cosy, ground floor space with high, brick-vaulted ceilings and whitewashed walls, but it’s just as much fun to sit outside.

Seven two/three-person tables stand on the broad pavement, sheltering under two large parasols and partially screened by tall plant pots. These are in two rows, one of three tables directly in front of Kaffeekommune and the second, with four tables, on the edge of the quiet, cobbled street. If you are sitting outside, order from the window to the right of the door, which doubles as the to-go window.

Alternatively, head in through the door on the left, where you’ll find the counter and its La Marzocco KB90 espresso machine straight ahead. There are retail shelves against the wall to the left (coffee kit) and free-standing shelves to the right (bags of coffee), the latter screening you from the serving area behind the window. There’s also another set of free-standing retail shelves behind the window, effectively screening it from the seating, forming a small, square serving area, which is very nicely done (and, I believe, a recent modification to the layout in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic).

The counter, on the left, is a two-sided affair (espresso, front; filter, back), with the seating to the right and at the back of the shop. A row of three two-person tables lines a bench against the right-hand wall, while beyond them is more seating, with a small raised area right at the back, accessed via a broad flight of three steps behind the counter. Tucked in to the right of the steps is a four-person table, while above that, on the right-hand side of the raised area, is a three-person table, which concludes the seating.

I got to Kaffeekommune towards the end of the day, ordering an espresso (which, by default, is a single) from the window. Realising that I wasn’t a regular, the barista warned me about that week’s espresso, a lightly-roasted, naturally-processed coffee, the Ethiopia Bombe G1, suggesting that it might not be what I was expecting, which pleased me no end. The result was a wonderful coffee, sweet, complex and really well balanced (and nothing like a typical espresso, which is exactly what I was hoping for!). After all my troubles with the trains, it really made my day.

Sadly I didn’t have time to linger, so, after a quick tour, I was on my way again, although Kaffeekommune gave me a gift of the current batch brew, which I took away in my Frank Green Ceramic cup. Kaffeekommune uses a different coffee each time it makes a new batch, which is typically three or four times a day! I had the Las Cascadas, a naturally-processed Colombian coffee with a 48-hour fermentation stage, which I enjoyed on the train back to Köln that evening, along with a slice of shortbread (which I bought). This was sweet and crumbly, while the coffee was full-bodied and fruity, the perfect endnote to my day.

BREIDENBACHERSTRAßE 9 • 55116 MAINZ • GERMANY
https://kaffeekommune.de +49 (0) 613 1693 0749
Monday 10:00 – 18:00 Roaster Koffeekommune (espresso + filter)
Tuesday 10:00 – 18:00 Seating Tables, Tables (outside)
Wednesday 10:00 – 18:00 Food Cake
Thursday 10:00 – 18:00 Service Order at Counter
Friday 10:00 – 18:00 Payment Cash + Cards
Saturday 10:00 – 18:00 Wifi TBC
Sunday 10:00 – 18:00 Power No
Chain No Visits 17th May 2022

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  1. Pingback: Brian’s Travel Spot: Köln to Mainz by Train along the Rhine | Brian's Coffee Spot

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