Located along a road in the halcyon Setagaya neighbourhood, Nozy Coffee is named after Masataka Nojo’s moniker ‘Nozy’. Born in 1987, Masataka surprised industry veterans by starting Nozy Coffee while he was still in university. They have since expanded and even supplied beans to a number of specialty coffee joints including THE COFFEESHOP and SARUTAHIKO COFFEE.
Astute use of space is evident here. In the basement is a retail counter and roastery; on the first floor is standing space for drinking and public cupping. Loft seats by the window create a snug space where you can enjoy solace or intimate chats. The elevated loft seating lends a breezy feel despite space constraint.
Brewed coffee is served in Bodum French Presses. A French Press allows oils to infuse and you can taste the beans in their purest form. (Learn how to brew coffee with a French Press in a step-by-step guide here.) The beans Nozy Coffee offers are on the fruity side – a testament to light roasting. Until recently, dark espresso roast is favoured: the shots are gloriously chocolatey and have a rich crema. Lately the trend is to embrace lighter roasts where fruit acids emerge; a light roast can cajole subtle nuances out of the beans. After all, roasting brings out the aroma and flavour locked inside green coffee beans. Releasing them so that they can tease your palate is the key. Pourover coffee or hand drip coffee, is a manual technique that uses a filtered coffee dripper and is all the rage these days. Before you decry pourover as a snobbish gimmick, there really is a remarkable difference in taste. Light roasted beans make excellent filter coffee as the aromas are released and there is more clarity in flavours.
We ordered Dominica Don Jimenez and Honduras El Comun. The staff thoughtfully gave us small cups so that we could sample each others’ coffee. Dominica Don Jimenez has a light body, bright notes of cherry tomato, becomes syrupy as it cools with apricot flavour and a caramelly finish. Honduras El Comun has a round, smooth mouthfeel, sweetness of cherries and syrupy malic notes of apple. Impressed with the luxuriant fruity notes, I bought Brazil Fazenda Pe Da Serra for brewing on a V60 back in Singapore.
Education is of utmost importance for specialty coffee whether one is honing his morning ritual or pursuing a career in the industry. Nozy Coffee emphasizes education. Green coffee beans are displayed along with roasted ones to encourage visual learning; public cupping sessions are organized so that you learn the characteristics of different varietals. In an increasingly fragmented world where we are inundated with a torrent of information, a café has the depth of knowledge that can make coffee time an enjoyable learning experience. In this regard, Nozy Coffee delivers truly holistic experiential learning.
While sipping Sonia’s coffee, I feel fortunate to have a girlfriend sharing the same passion. Life is a shared learning journey and we can grow together, not apart. True love is never apart, maybe in distance, but not in heart.
Twitter: Nozy Coffee
Website: Nozy Coffee
Address: 2-29-7 Shimouma, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo