Espresso Perfecto at Catalina Coffee

Now that’s a cup of espresso. You want to spread the crema on a bagel and eat it. Many thanks to

El Koshkin and Nealio

for recommending Catalina Coffee Company (2201 Washington Avenue, 713 861 8448). Catalina Coffee Company is a very cool place to hang out.

Owner Max Gonzalez was dressed in an olive drab Fidel Castro hat the day we stopped by. Coffee-mad Max is a espresso perfectionista and his passion is contagious.

When I asked Max what brand of coffee he used, he said he bought fair trade coffee for the drip blend and Hopson Coffee Company’s espresso. I said I had never heard of Hopson Coffee, and he said that was because he was the company’s only commercial customer.

Turns out Hopson Coffee Company is run by a Houston electrician named Bill Giffen who is such a coffee geek, he started roasting his own beans. He sells them to a small cadre of coffee fans via the internet.

You can read the long and circuitous story of Hobson Coffee Company (with stops in Clarksdale, Mississippi, and Crested Butte, Colorado) on this Web site. Meanwhile, we’ll try to get in touch with Mr. Giffen and go pay him a visit soon. -- Robb Walsh

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