There’s a new cafe/bakery in Somerville, across the street from my apartment. It’s in a storefront that’s been vacant for a few years, and had previously been used for a succession of three or four bagel shops. These were all traditional NJ bagel shops, and all of them were pretty good. Since the last one closed, there really hasn’t been a good place in Somerville to get a fresh bagel. (This may have actually helped quite a bit with my weight loss over the last few years.) Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks have bagels, of course, but they’re not really bagels, if you know what I mean.
I’ve been to the new place once, and had a sandwich and cappuccino. They were both OK, but not amazing or anything. I need to try their bagels and see if they’re any good.
There are now three places in town that could reasonably be described as “coffee shops”: Starbucks, Dragonfly, and Conlin’s (the new place). There was an interesting article in The Guardian recently about how coffee shops have become a signifier of urban change. Something does seem to be happening to Somerville, with new, expensive, apartment buildings going up, and fancier stores on Main Street. I guess I can’t complain about any change that allows me access to better coffee. But I hope my rent remains affordable.