If you are young, and if you are lucky, there are certain places that you experience in your life – a pub, a club, a coffee shop – that you will never forget, no matter how long you will live.
Alchemy is one of those places. It is a commercial coffee shop, but it feels like the bohemian dream of your greatest wish. It feels like the gaff of the coollest guy or girl, the person you – really, really – want to be friends with. It’s the scenius you want to be a part of. It’s ramshackle, yet everything is in its place, and in the right place. The food is simple, yet it’s also profound: it’s the food you want to eat, now. And the brews are top-notch, the sort of drinks that can fill a hole in your soul.
Alchemy is Coolsville, yet entirely unselfconscious. The staff are laid-back, yet they work with unerring precision. It’s the sort of place you remember as being perfect, yet it’s deliberately far from perfect. All these tensions between what it is and how it is ought to mean that Alchemy shouldn’t work. And yet: of course it works. A single word sums it up: genius.
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