It’s easy to forget your morning coffee started out as the seed of a fruit – a cherry, to be precise. But not at Gold Drops, a coffee spot that serves exclusively natural coffee. It’s by Ari Abad, who also owns Barrio 3121 in Richmond.

After being picked and sorted, natural coffee is left to dry in the sun with the fruit of the cherry still on the bean. Instead of being washed off, the flavour of the cherry concentrates in the bean over a period of several weeks. The end result is rich, sweet and intensely fruity. A lot of baristas aren’t fans of natural coffee, and it’s not always easy to get the flavours right because the process allows for a high risk of fermentation.

The space is compact, elegant and welcoming, with wood, mirrors and lots of marble; it emulates a European or Italian espresso bar. A few stools and bench spots are available for those who want to linger, along with Argentinian pastries from Sara Cakes and a selection of specialty teas.

Updated: June 16th, 2021

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