Monday, April 18, 2016

Coffee & Cotton

A review of Coffee & Cotton in Lowell, MA

This weekend I spent a couple of days visiting a friend at UMass Lowell. While I was there, he introduced me to a fabulous coffee shop called Coffee & Cotton. We had a pleasant time enjoying sandwiches with fresh ingredients and quality coffee. We were also lucky enough to arrive on a day where there was live music and a small farmer's market on the floor where the shop is housed.

The coffee shop is in an area amidst a number of small restaurants and cafes. It is on the fourth floor of a building that was once a textile factory now renamed as Mill No. 5. It is a rather large, old, dull, stained building on a quiet street not too far from downtown. 

It was remade into a space that is artist friendly and creates a lovely place for people to enjoy their time. We entered the building through big black gates to where we rode a slow elevator to the fourth floor. We were greeted with a lively and energetic atmosphere. As far as you could see there were vendors selling a variety of things from sweet-smelling pastries to clothes, jewelry, honey, handmade pasta, plants, books, maple syrup and more. Other shops on the floor included a record store, a book store, a yoga studio, and an old fashioned style theater. 

Entering the shop was magical. The place has a rustic, vintage style look with mahogany wood furnishing and lightbulbs hanging from the ceiling above your head. We visited the shop at about 10am on a Sunday and there was a large crowd for the farmers market. The shop was somewhat busy but still maintained it's calm and cozy ambiance. For the most part customers opted to sit and either read a book, do work, or interact with whoever they were with. Some would take advantage of the comfortable couches in the next room of the shop or they would find a table off in the corner. 

The menu offers an assortment of house made pastries and hot and cold beverages like tea, cider, and lattes. There is also different kinds of espresso as well as some food. We both chose iced beverages. I tried the mocha latte which was delicious. It had a slight chocolate taste which was nice because it was balanced and not too overbearing of the coffee flavor. He chose the maple flavored coffee and it also had a mixed smooth flavor. For sandwiches, I decided to go with a grilled cheese on sourdough bread with tomato and bacon and for my friend a pesto chicken on sourdough. Both sandwiches were made with care and you could tell. The bread was toasted a perfect golden brown and the ingredients were fresh and flavorful.

Besides the wonderful atmosphere, the quality food and beverages, what really impressed me was how knowledgeable the barista was about the products. Overall the visit was great and I would recommend anyone to stop by if they are in the area of Lowell. Sunday through Tuesday, the shop is open at 7am until 8pm, and the rest of the week it is open at 7am until 10pm.

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