Summerside finally has good coffee. Not great coffee, mind you, but very good coffee. Samuel’s has been open in the old Moving Designz space at Queen St and Water St (the Journal-Pioneer building) for about a week now. While the title of this post cheekily compares it to Starbucks, that’s just not fair to Seattle’s pride. Samuel’s is better. The barista who served me seemed green – his customer service was a tad underdeveloped, and his coffee needed finesse, but it was certainly one of the better cappuccinos I’ve had on PEI – if not the best.
The space has a simple decor, with brick walls painted white (a holdover from Moving Designz, if I recall correctly), comfortable black chairs, and plenty of light. One of the neatest parts of the space is the vault, which is tucked away, providing a seating for four, in two distinct sections. If you want a quiet conversation, the vault is probably your best bet. Half of the space had yet to be fitted out, and I’m unsure as to whether they plan to expand the seating into the side room. The wifi at Samuel’s was relatively snappy. I’m a bit more of a fan of bare-brick and more wood, but I did enjoy the location.
If my espresso machine were on the fritz or if I absolutely needed a coffee downtown I’d be there in a heartbeat, but it’s hard to justify paying for a cuppa when comparable quality can be produced at home. The shop was bustling, however, with a few seemingly retired couples, a young family on vacation, and a middle aged woman working on her computer. For a Thursday afternoon I was quite impressed. I’m sure I’ll be back at least once more before my vacation is over.
I’m quite confident Samuel’s will be around for a while, and that’s great for this town. Now my focus must shift: getting a good bar with freshly prepared food and impeccable beer. Once we have that, my love affair with Halifax may finally be severed.