As a (self-proclaimed) coffee connoisseur, I was ecstatic to learn that Ithaca was gaining a new coffee shop this week. While I’m not necessarily opposed to going to Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts or CTB for an afternoon cup of joe, I have long been under the impression that Ithaca could use a quieter, more relaxed space to do work and drink some coffee. So, to see if Chatty Cathy would fulfill my dreams, I dragged three of my friends Friday morning to get a sampling of their drinks.
Walking into the café, I was surprised to see how small it was — there were only six seats, split up among three tables. However, the décor was cheery, bright and welcoming. My favorite aspect of their furnishing was the walls covered in grass, further conveying the happy, almost Brooklyn feeling of the shop. In order to form an accurate opinion of Chatty Cathy, we ordered three drinks. I definitely wanted to try a coffee drink, of which there were many to choose from. The options were not very personalizable though, as there was no opportunity to add in flavor shots or really amend the default offering. My first drink was a classic iced latte, suggested to me by the owner. After watching in awe as he used his intricate machine to brew my drink, I was delightfully surprised by the bold taste. The quality was far superior to any other coffee shop I’ve been to in Ithaca, and it was absolutely delicious. If you are a latte fan, or just want a well-crafted coffee drink, look no further! There is very little chance I am going back to Starbucks for a latte now that I tasted Chatty Cathy’s superior version.
In addition to the coffee selection, I felt obligated to also taste their juice, as coffee and juice press are both mentioned on the store’s insignia. We ordered a “Love Juice,” which contained strawberry, pineapple, lemon, celery, parsley and apple. The juice cost $8.99, which I thought was a bit pricey, but that was standard for all juices, which ranged from $6.99 – $8.99. I was initially taken aback watching them create this concoction when the lemon was put into the juicer with the rind still attached, but apparently that is standard operating procedure. Sorry — I can’t be a connoisseur of all beverages. After I was assured by my friends that the juice was drinkable, I absolutely loved (pun intended) this selection. It was the perfect combination of tangy and sweet. While I don’t necessarily see myself coming here frequently to get this option, just because I find the price to be high compared to the coffee selections, I will undoubtedly treat myself with the Love Juice every once in a while.
Overall, my experience at Chatty Cathy was absolutely spectacular, and the owners were delightful. Ithaca truly is lucky to have this new café. The only downsides that I perceived were the scarcity of seating options and the relatively high prices for juices and smoothies. Regardless of these drawbacks, I still thoroughly enjoyed my experience and will certainly go back. Chatty Cathy is a great option for coffee lovers, juice fanatics and everyone in between.