On a recent trip to Riga, Latvia, my family wound up having lunch in the very unassuming Rocket Bean Roastery. Located in an old sock factory, in one of the capital city's 'hipster' neighborhoods, Rocket Bean is known locally for its strong coffees, craft beers, and creative menu. To be honest, what actually drew us in were the bags of espresso and t-shirts in the window emblazoned with the "Magic Pussy Espresso" logo.
Made on a custom neon backlit La Marzocco Strada espresso machine, my wife had a cappuccino and I enjoyed a latte. I made the mistake of giving Saul, our 14-month-old son, some of the foam from my latte. He loved it, and immediately asked for more. In addition to providing drinks made on the La Marzocco Strada, roastery guests can have their pick of coffees brewed in a Chemex, V60, Syphon or Aeropress.
While we waited for our meals (we ordered steak, and we're vegetarians) Saul and I walked around the roastery to explore. There was a large retail space that sold coffee, brewing supplies, and yes, Magic Pussy Espresso t-shirts and glass panels divide the roasting space from the rest of the cafe, allowing customers to watch staff as they roast green coffee beans. Similarly, a glass wall with a high-top bar, give patrons a view of the kitchen. Saul particularly liked waiving to the chefs as they prepared our lunch.
When our plates arrived, it was clear that chef Arturs Taskans had worked and trained in Michelin starred kitchens. The presentation, texture and taste of our meals was unlike anything we had ever tasted before.
If you find yourself in Riga, Latvia, find your way to Rocket Bean Roastery.