Today’s CoffeeOffice™: 1903

Most of you who know me know that a proper coffeeoffice™ is essential to the workflow of my so-called freelance life. I have my regular haunts, my favourites being Stella’s Lunch Box on St. Clair, El Almacen Yerba Matte Café on Queen, Cafe Novo in the Market, and if I fancied a longer ride, Grackle Coffee Co. in Schomberg. Today, I decided to check out what the hoopla was about Harley-Davidson’s new cafe on the oh-so-hip Ossington strip. I’d dropped by the second day it opened and found a vast, mostly-empty cavernous space, that screamed ad-agency BRANDING, BRANDING, BRANDING!…

But, seeing that more and more of my biker peeps were showing up at the space on social media, I decided to ride down for lunch at Pho Thien Thanh and an Americano at 1903. Walking In, the first person I saw was no other than Ian EatSleepRide Kelso, who apparently had the same idea.

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As did many others, it seemed, as I entered a beehive of laptop activity, amidst shiny new motorcycles and some well-worn vintage classics.

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I was surprised at how busy it was on a hot friday afternoon, but there was ample room for me to set up, right across from Ian.

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Me by Ian, with a little of Wobblycat FB action thrown in. Crazy digital loop! Photo © Ian Kelso

My measure of a coffee shop is a simple Americano, so I ordered one and it was simply served in a small cup by the Fahrenheit Coffee folks. The Americano hit the spot and gets a thumbs up. Par-for-the-Harley-course, you had a choice of beans: the 48, 72, and 883, a touch that would go way over the heads of non-riding Oss Hipsters, but it’s a nice detail.

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1903 is busy enough to counteract its massive footprint, and the coffee staff is friendly and adds to the cafe’s personality. I also liked the fact that there are plenty of electrical outlets (including USB ports) on hand, perfect for the creative freelancer for getting work done…and writing blog posts (this being written at the cafe, my second Americano on hand, this time iced – yum!)

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Then there are the bikes, ready to be straddled. And that’s what it’s all about, isn’t it?

Bike guy Peter Sipitsyn was on hand to answer any questions, and encouraged visitors to hop on. Being a non-Harley guy, it was the beginning of my edjamacation on matters Hog.

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Peter, puttin’ the spit-an-polish on the Softail Slim.

It’s a great place for an introduction to HD, away from the hustle-and-bustle of bike shows, and the buy-now pressure of dealerships. No bikes are sold from the space, which exists simply to increase awareness…of good coffee and baked goods 😉 .

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Definitely will come back on a work getaway soon. HD’s idea for a social space won me over, mostly by the down-home-friendliness of the staff. Is it too much to ask the other manufacturers to do something similar?

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