The thing I love about Collective Espresso is how incognito it is. There are no posters or pamphlets that tell you how environmentally-conscious or locally-sourced their products are. You won't find a flashy sign guiding in the morning masses to grab a power-coffee en route to the corporate sales meeting. The guys at Collective Espresso have created a much more genuine experience than we are used to in Cincinnati.
Dave and Dustin, two long-time friends who also share the love of proper bean and brew, are doing it right. The day of my visit they had only been open for 3 days, and you would've never known. Firing on all cylinders, there were at least a dozen customers served at the bar or via take-away during my short stay. And while speed is admirable, quality is the reason you'll visit.
Teaming up with Quills coffee (Louisville, KY), with offerings from Deeper Roots (Cincinnati) and beyond, Collective Espresso is quietly living out the credo that others love to trumpet: highest-quality, local-minded, responsible, and perfectly crafted. Their "everyday" espresso, the Blacksmith, started bold and finished sweet, very sweet - and no hint of anything burnt. The Cappuccino was deliciously frothy with the perfect blend of milk and espresso. Nice and filling - just as it should be.
Stop by 207 Woodward St (a block off of Main) to get your next fix of caffeinated-delight. You'll find two guys creating an experience by actuallydoing what others only advertise, and I'm pretty sure that Collective Espresso is going to be here for a long time. After all, history generally admires the ones who actually live out their ethos - not the ones who boast for the moment.