Saturday, June 16, 2018

Pot Meet "The Kettle Black"

Established last year, The Kettle Black is spreading love and creativity in baking and drinks department. Don't expect an ordinary kind of bliss.
I made a desperate stop in the Northern Liberties area, an integral part of my hour + walking journey to work, just to visit The Kettle Black on N. 2nd Street. For weeks, some great Instagram accounts have been singing the praises of this indie spirited coffee and bread joint, a nod to France with its boulangerie playing the right notes. Serving up breads and pastries, on occasion specials have included vegan cinnamon rolls, vegan cruffins (crumpet and muffin?), and vegan funfetti croissants.

I am anxious to try the vanilla rose latte! Vanilla rose simple syrup (house made) sounds too good to be true.
When inside the space, warm, pleasant relaxation come to mind, the environment, although small, beckons one to stay and write, chat, linger a while longer. Muted colors on the walls, large windows letting the sun shine in, and clean, clear display case full of beautiful, browned pastries designed to tease hungry revelers on their way to 9-5. A few people can afford the dalliance to sit on tall stools facing the spring blossomed trees, their phones and mini laptops on fitting effortlessly on narrow wooden alignment.

The associate was friendly, giving me a few seconds to look over the entire place. I watched people order their straight coffees and espressos before deciding on trying the vegan croissants.

Humble bread loaves and a mountain of fresh bagels.

The makings of a splendid day cast in golden light to rival the sunshine.

Vegan croissants to go.

After warmed up, this impressive croissant is incredibly flaky, pillowy soft, and full of rich, fattening, "buttery" flavor. It's definitely worth the pit stop.

The first two rolls are usually vegan. 

The current featured artwork fits in quite nicely. These three evenly spaced compositions of intricate line details are contained inside creased, oblong shapes exploring contrast with limited color palette. It's also interesting what color can convey. In the black and white, many representations come to mind such as floating fish, molecular fluidity, and impromptu beginnings of exploring pure abstraction. In a red one, the same line qualities are painted green with yellow green outlines, appearing like leaves or some rare green animal existing in a charged bloodline.

Naturally, I came back to Kettle Black the very next day for the lox sandwich on a black salt bagel. Fashionably frugal yet casual in headwrap from Eva's Headwraps (she has sadly disappeared without word on social media), Kay Unger sunglasses ($8 from Burlington Coat Factory), and a pug print blouse ($2 from Circle Thrift). 

The lox, made of tofu, is divine! I have never had real lox so thus I cannot make a proper comparison. The smoky generous pieces were a mouthful of deliciousness coated affectionately with superb vegan cream cheese-- creamy, rich, no odd after tastes. Alas, the black salt bagel is not just an aesthetically pleasing eye wonder. From its coarse salted granules at the top to the chewy, dense softness of its toasted glory, there is no surprise that it's a popular favorite. It's unique and amazing. 


  1. I might have to swing by just for that bagel sandwich. Looks so good. I loved lox before I went vegan, but I haven't tried any vegan version yet.

    Did you try that rose vanilla latte? It sounds dreamy. I would have to try that too.

    1. They have other bagels too-- like black sesame. Yum.

      I haven't tried the latte, but it's next on my list.