Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Since the fall of 2010, Johnston Street Java has quietly crept up the caffeinated ladder and is now one of the hot spots for students studying, coffee klatches and the self-employed who think, “You know what? Sunlight. Sunlight and fellow human beings. Yes!”
Its location at 3123 Johnston St., a stone’s throw from the Grand 16 cinema and in front of J&R Educational Supplies, is no coincidence: The coffee shop’s owner is Peter Martin of J&R. The manager is Nathanael Johnson who also owns Mosaic Café in Eunice. It’s mainly Johnson who creates the menu made up of sandwiches, pastries, Italian sodas, coffees and teas. While there isn’t always room in the parking lot, don’t let that fool you; there is probably space inside or on the wraparound porch.
“Typically coffee shops do well near movie theaters,” says Johnson of JSJ’s success. “We [opened] at a time where people were ready for something new and different.”
Handily, Johnston Street Java also has an easily accessible drive-thru.
The sandwiches are basic, hearty and tasty. The ham sandwich is simply French bread, ham and pepperjack cheese dashed with horseradish and put into a panini press for a few minutes. The horseradish taste isn’t intense enough to scare those put off by its strong flavor. Its marriage with the pepperjack cheese adds just the right amount of bite against the sweet, smoky ham. Most of the sandwiches have no more than a few ingredients, and Johnson has just rolled out sandwiches made on foccacia — $3.90 for the sandwich. You’ll pay extra for chips and a drink, which can be regular coffee, tea or soda.
Johnson credits the Orleans Coffee Exchange for helping Johnston Street Java get off the ground. “We were able to find a business that really specializes in Grade A coffee, true micro roasters.” This family-owned Big Easy company has been around since 1985. A micro roaster is much the same as a micro brewery — small batches made to exact specifications being inspected every step of the process. A typical bean batch is less than 150 pounds versus the hundreds of pounds per batch by a commercial roaster. The flavor of the coffee is deep and often flecked with, no surprise, chicory. Try anything from the regular coffee to the usual suspects: iced, cappuccino, café au lait, latte and more. The prices range from about $1.70 to $4.65 depending on size and flavors.
Now speaking of caffeine and its various delivery systems: I went to a very intensive college, made all the more intensive because my parents taught at the same university, so staying up to study or finish books past my evening shift was a nightmare. Had I this Chocolate Espresso Puck then I wouldn’t be writing this now; I would be a research assistant for Neil DeGrasse Tyson. This thing is a round brick of high quality milk and dark chocolates combined and poured over coffee beans. And it is serious. The chocolate is creamy, not waxy, and the beans provide just the right satisfying crunch that tells your brain it’s going to be awake for a while. It’s quite rich, but don’t let it fool you — you’re going to finish it.
Johnston Street Java does have plans to expand in the future but in what capacity is uncertain. Until then, check it out at the location that started it all and read about it in The Independent’s just-released Spring 2012 Restaurant Guide, in the new Coffee & Pastries category.
Lafayette native artist Rick Begneaud shines at AcA
Business organizations opposed the proposal, saying it would lead to job losses and higher prices for goods and services.
An attempt to repeal a six-year-old law that permits public school science teachers to use material outside a classroom's adopted textbook has been rejected by the Senate Education Committee.
New York Times poll shows Obama, Jindal have identical approval and disapproval ratings in the state.
See which events are taking place during INNOV8 Lafayette this Friday, April 25.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Lisa Boudreaux come and get your goodies.
OK, so they’re bentgrass, the type used on golf course greens. But grass is grass.
Jefferson Street restaurant and pub debuts during Festival with limited menu.
The Senate Finance Committee approved the bill Wednesday, despite opponents who argued it would shut down the storefront lenders.
A measure to allow the state to implement its own, less stringent plan for limiting carbon dioxide emissions unanimously passed the Senate.
FDA to regulate e-cigarettes, Jodie Foster gets married, Vermont to require labels on genetically-modified food, and more news for today, April 24, 2014.
Thursday's Blogs from the Bog!
A push to expand Louisiana's Medicaid program as allowed under the federal health care has been overwhelmingly rejected by the Senate health committee.
See which events are taking place during INNOV8 Lafayette this Thursday.
It’s on, y’all. Fest fIND, our annual Festival International de Louisiana reader contest, is now accepting photo submissions.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Louisiana welfare recipients would be prohibited in state law from spending the federal assistance at lingerie shops, tattoo parlors, nail salons and jewelry stores, under a bill that received the support Wednesday of a House committee.
Senators will consider whether to prohibit private businesses in Louisiana from paying unequal wages to employees of different genders for the same job.
Rep. Joel Robideaux has delayed bill hearings and said unless a compromise can be reached, he won't bring up the legislation this session.
Once again, Lafayette Parish School Board President Hunter Beasley is focused on an issue that has nothing to do with the educational well-being of our public school children.
Fashion and music make great bedfellows
Producers, manufacturers, restaurants and chefs host roundtable and tasting
After exhausting his appeals all the way to the state Supreme Court, the owner of the Tiger Truck Stop in Grosse Tete has no legal remedy left save one: do an end run around the high court via a bill that would grandfather his “right” to keep a 550-pound tiger enclosed in a pin at his roadside business.
Louisiana poet Darrell Bourque has won the 2014 Louisiana Writer Award, given annually to recognize outstanding contributions to Louisiana's literary and intellectual life.
Drivers would have to secure dogs riding in truck beds while on interstate highways, if the Senate agrees to a bill backed by the House.
The easy one-piece way to style
Comfy feet for long days
Newsy bits for the whole fam
Don't forget: our annual Festival International contest begins Thursday! Win. Cool. Stuff.