Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Sidamo Coffee & Tea in Fulton
The Fulton coffee shop opened last year in Maple Lawn, and it serves breakfast, lunch and all the coffee drinks that you would expect. Ironically, I bought beans there as part of a survey that initially left me convinced that all Howard County coffee shops were created equal. But Sidamo's coffee was more equal. I kept going back. I kept loving the coffee. By now, Sidamo has been my source for whole beans for almost a year.
Sidamo is the second location for owners who started out on the H Street NE corridor near Capitol Hill. It's a cheery, sunlit space that kicks off
If anything, I wish Sidamo did more to push its sandwiches. The chalkboard lists just the generic names, and it took a Washington Post review to talk up the fact that they're imaginative sandwiches made with homemade ingredients like hummus, lentils, etc. (Update: The sandwiches are delicious -- worth a visit if you need lunch.)
But the coffee has become my real addiction. I have been addicted to the caffeine since a relapse in 1998, but Sidamo has me addicted to coffee that tastes delicious. They roast the beans on site in the red metal roaster that sits at the front of the store. They're heavy on Ethiopian varieties, and I cycle between Mandheling, Sidamo and Yirgacheffe. They're all full of earthy coffee flavor -- but smooth rather than bitter.
One fun item that I actually haven't seen yet: Sidamo hosts a traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony every Sunday at 2 pm. It's a little theater. A free lesson about Ethiopian culture. The WPost described the version at the DC location.
If you want crazy-good coffee, check out Pele Plantation coffee from Hawaii. These are the people who taught me that coffee doesn't have to be Starbucks-bitter. Their coffee is delicious and might make a fun gift for the coffee nut in your life.
Sidamo Coffee & Tea
8180 Maple Lawn Boulevard
Fulton, MD 20759
NEAR: Sidamo is in sight of Rte 216 in the Maple Lawn development. You need to drive around the back of Looney's to park and walk into Sidamo.