list of bay area coffee shops – with a bay area coffee map

here’s my subjective ranking of the best espresso/coffee in the san francisco bay area, complete with a google map.

[googlemap width=”640″ height=”480″ src=”,-122.306671&spn=0.2689835,0.371824&z=11&output=embed”]

key: more crema = better.  empty cup =  not so good.  Sorry about the funky anti-aliasing.



not bad:

drinkable but not pleasant:

  • farley’s (san francisco/oakland/emervyille, farley’s blend from sunshine? in san leandro)  Recently had a not good one from the 65th st emeryville location.  doh.
  • peerless (oakland, peerless)
  • woody’s cafe (oakland, ?)
  • crepevine (oakland/berkeley, ?)
  • riva (berkeley, ?)
  • starbucks (starbucks)
  • peets (peets)
  • uncommon grounds cafe (berkeley, uncommon grounds)

not drinkable:

  • none yet.  Maybe I have a high tolerance?

credit for working the google maps/wordpress hack: if you want to try this, don’t forget to add the &embed at the end of your link.

Peerless Coffee, Oakland CA

I tried to stop by Peerless Coffee Company (260 Oak Street Oakland, CA) for lunch,  but found that they didn’t serve food except for the candies in their gift shop.  It’s a neat building and they have a gift shop that holds various tea and coffee accessories as well as candies and books.  There’s industrial-scale roasting equipment in the rear that you can catch a glimpse of while browsing the gift shop.

I ordered a shot of espresso.  The girl behind the counter said it’d be a ristretto, but once I got the coffee, it reminded me more of a “double” that you can buy at Starbucks.  The espresso wasn’t very enjoyable but it was drinkable and contained caffeine that I needed for the afternoon.  There wasn’t much crema.

peerless coffee: espresso

Oddly, there was an Oji brewing machine in their tasting room (which was closed when I visited)

peerless coffee: oji brewer