Nothing complements a coffee better than a book (okay, a pastry isn’t so bad either).
Eugene Kagansky, owner of D’Espresso in the Lower East Side, had exactly this in mind when he opened another coffee shop outside the New York Public Library. He reportedly told his designer: “Let’s do a coffee bar that looks like a library, but would be more interesting.”
Mark his words.
With a budget of $500,000, designer Anurag Nem of nemaworkshop flipped the 500-square-foot coffee shop on its side and lined the wall and floor with glazed tiles printed with books to allude to sideway tilted bookshelves. Another wall is covered with oak flooring. Lights jet out horizontally from the behind the bar rather than from the ceiling.
Kagansky said he plans to open 10 more in Manhattan and other major cities. He says that the next one will be upside down.
Hold your coffee cup with two hands.
D’Espresso, 317 Madison Avenue (42nd Street), (212) 867-7141. Opened this month. New Yorkers are saying that it will blow you away, so it must be pretty good.